Best Allergy Medications
I wrote an article on allergy meds about a year or so ago, and at the time those two medications (Nasonex and Claritin) worked very well for me. Unfortunately, they no longer do. Last week, I started using two new medications, and I am now in love with them and want to share this information with anyone who might have the type of allergies I have. Let's first take a look at what they are -- and yes, I have them all year round. Related article: How to Use an EpiPen.
Major edema, upper eyelid, caused by dust mite allergy. My left eye had a bit of swelling, but the right upper eyelid was major. There was slight improvement when I started using the meds I used to use (Claritin and Nasonex) but eventually these meds stopped helping.
Unable to breathe through my nose at night, caused by dust mite allergy. I would go to bed fine, and in the middle of the night would wake up sniffling and unable to breathe well.
Severe itching, caused by dust mite allergy. Once or twice a week I would wake up with severe itching everywhere.
A few other minor symptoms.
WARNING: This medication can lower the immune system. If you're on this medication and find yourself exposed to Chicken Pox or Measles, tell your doctor immediately, as this type of exposure can be fatal.
OTC Allergy Help
Dust mites: Severe, year round. When I was tested for allergies, both of the dust mite tests had full-blown reactions -- painful reactions -- almost immediately. I had to take meds before the test had finished, so severe was the reaction. See the next section to see symptoms this caused.
Latex: Severe, year round. Latex may seem like something easy enough to avoid, but when you have a latex allergy, you're susceptible to several other allergic reactions as well. Exotic fruits, for example: If a person's allergy is developed enough, they can have anaphylactic reactions just from eating an avocado, banana, kiwi and several other foods.
Grass: Moderate, seasonal. Lots of people have this one. I start sneezing when I smell fresh cut grass and I itch if I sit down on it.
Birch: Moderate, seasonal. Lots of cross reactions from this one, particularly certain foods from certain trees.
A few other minor reactions that I wouldn't require medication for, so I'm not going to list them here.
The Medications That Worked
Firstly, let me be clear that Nasonex (spray) and Claritin (tablets) did work a year ago. But by the end of last summer, that was no longer the case. When my allergies started getting worse, I went in for allergy testing, because I was afraid I was allergic to my cat. Fortunately, I'm not. But like I've said, I am allergic to dust mites, and those are everywhere, whether you have a clean house or not.
Avamys/Veramyst (fluticasone furoate)
One spray daily, each nostril. This is sooo much better than having to spray each nostril twice, two times daily. This stuff sprays so easily and the mist is so fine that you don't feel like your nose is running for 30 minutes.
Non-Drowsy: I have never felt sleepy from this spray.
Better than Claritin: I can assure you that these are quite different medications despite the relation; Claritin did not help me at all anymore, and Clarinex has been a miracle.
Non-Drowsy: Like Claritin, Clarinex will not (should not, anyway) make you tired. And I am someone who got "cloudy head" from Zyrtec.
Once a day: I take one pill each day before bed. I take it at bedtime not because it makes me drowsy, but because I'm most exposed to dust mites when I sleep.
Natural Allergy Cures
About 24 hours after starting Avamys/Veramyst, I noticed a huge reduction in swelling, and I could breathe much better at night. The improvement continued after I added Aerius/Clarinex. But the best results for me, personally, were this:
I started taking Aerius/Clarinex before bed, and started taking Avamys/Veramyst in the morning. When I switched to this regimen, all of the swelling went away and my eyes were back to normal. My breathing was also back to normal, as opposed to just greatly improved. I can't be sure, but I suspect spraying before bed was creating a minor blockage of some type -- taking it in the morning has made everything perfect.
Both meds are fantastic, but I don't think either one would be sufficient for my allergies on their own. This may not be the case for you and your allergies, and you may want to try them separately first.