The ways in which we come into contact with an allergen are through eating, touching, inhaling or being injected by allergens. We know we are allergic or hypersensitive to a substance if we have an obvious negative response to the substance, are tested by skin testing to confirm the allergen, do an elimination diet (not advised for known anaphylaxis reactions), or through the use of Applied Kinesiology.
I have personally worked with Traditional Chinese Medicine, herbal formulas, dietary changes, supplements, N.A.E.T., avoidance, Bio-set, hypnotherapy, and my own allergy treatment synthesis of techniques called Allergy and Food Intolerance Resolution―all with varying degrees of success which has led me to the following conclusions:
- Some patients respond more favorably to one system of treatment than another.
- There appears to be a connection between allergies and stress.
- There is a difference between the IgE mediated response to an allergen that creates the
- symptoms of runny nose, itchy eyes, sneezing, hives, throat swelling and breathing difficulties that can be life threatening, and non-mediated responses ( IgG, IgA, IgM) which can be silent and cause more chronic immunity and digestive issues.
- Simply removing an allergic reaction to a substance may not be enough to regulate an already
- compromised system‒– and sometimes it will.
- Some allergies can be outgrown like milk, eggs and soy―others are not.
- If you have a history of anaphylaxis, it is best to keep an inhaler or Epipen on hand regardless
- of the type of treatment.
Some Common Approaches to Allergy Treatment
Elimination Diet In this approach, you stop eating suspicious foods, read labels, and keep a food diary to see if symptoms disappear. After removal of certain foods, you will gradually reintroduce into your diet the foods you were avoiding, one at a time. Last, you will be asked to once again stop eating the foods that are believed to be causing your allergy symptoms. The goal is to see if the symptoms clear up for good.
Antihistamines Drugs that inhibit the action of histamine in the body can relieve or prevent the symptoms of rash, hives, sneezing, runny nose, itchy eyes, etc. There can be side effects and they can interact with other medications so be sure to consult your physician before taking.
Allergy Shots Like vaccinations, allergy shots start with a small amount of the allergen and increase the concentration over time for your system to get used to it.
Acupuncture Acupuncture works with the body’s internal pharmacy and is able to unblock and reprogram responses. Working on the immune and digestive systems is a part of the overall treatment strategy. Typically, diet, supplements and herbal formulas will be recommended.
N.A.E.T. (Nambudripad Allergy Elimination Techniques) discovered by Dr. Devi Nambudripad, D.C., this system involves using Applied Kinesiology (muscle response testing) and specific allergen vials to identify allergies and intolerances then the use of acupuncture to balance the system. The basic system today involves 15 initial treatments and the patient must avoid contact with the specific substance for 25 hours after each treatment.
BioSet (Bioenergetic Sensitivity & Enzyme Therapy) developed by Dr. Ellen Cutler, D.C. encompasses three distinct stages of treatment‒detoxification, enzyme therapy and desensitization. The philosophy behind BioSet is that the digestive system governs the immune system. It also requires the patient to avoid the specific substance for a day.
A.S.E.R.T. (Allergy/Sensitivity Elimination and Reprogramming Technique). Is a modification of N.A.E.T. and used by Dr. John Brimhall. It incorporates the principles of Chiropractic, Applied Kinesiology and Acupuncture with his own 10-step protocol.
A.F.I.R. (Allergy and Food Intolerance Resolution) is my own synthesis of techniques which includes allergen vials with muscle response testing, cold laser on ear and head acupuncture points, primary acupuncture points chosen for each individual treatment and the use of Hemi-Sync Metamusic Technologies to enhance relaxation, learning and creativity through specific brain wave activity.
It is my belief that clearing the initial reaction to allergens is critical to the subsequent successful rebuilding of our digestive and immune health. In this, it is like “fighting an infection.” You must destroy the harmful invasion―eliminate the interference― before you can focus on rebuilding health.
Anita Alexandra, L.Ac., CH is an acupuncturist and Chinese herbalist with 16+ years of experience. She practices at Chiropractic Health and Acupuncture, 619 Main Street, Frisco. (970)668-3299 www.CHAfrisco.com