~by Dr. Greg Steiner
CA Acupuncture & Chiropractic Clinic
There are many ways to treat allergies. Many of the over the counter allergy medicines go by the name of anti-histamines thus eliminating histamine response. These meds serve as temporary fire extinguishers that can give some relief albeit short-lived and must be used repeatedly to keep the symptoms at bay. Other allergic reactions may be to dust or mold which can be effectively removed in most households thus eliminating or reducing the severity of the problem. But air-borne irritants like pollen are almost impossible to avoid; they even stick to our clothing when we go outside and thus we “wear” them wherever we go!
It’s important to note that there are allergies and there are hyper-sensitivities which chemically are slightly different. An allergy can show up on a scratch test, yet a hyper-sensitivity may not although the symptoms such as scratchy or itchy eyes or throat, runny nose, and sneezing are still present in both types.
A completely drug free, natural alternative for allergy or hyper-sensitivity symptom relief can be found in a treatment called NAET (stands for Nambudribad’s Allergy Elimination Technique) which works wonders when combined with acupuncture. Even though acupuncture is well established and has been utilized for centuries, it still remains controversial with western medicine. That said, I’ve had remarkable success with patients implementing these techniques in helping not only determine the root cause of the allergy but also overcoming its effects.
The testing is somewhat provocative (to provoke a response) in that you try to provide a sample of the possible allergen and introduce it to the patient. If they have a weakness or some other symptom in the body after exposure to it, a determination can be made. It’s important to have an experienced practitioner who can identify even the subtlest of reactions in the patient. The real usefulness of this is that there is a more precise and targeted application of the acupuncture. With these treatments, the allergen is identified and then the body is taught how to reduce the allergic response to it. A recipe is created on how to help the individual deal more effectively with their allergies.
What some people don’t realize is that there is often an interaction between food and atmospheric allergens as well. For example, if a person has low grade inflammation all the time because of the type of food they are eating (i.e. gluten or dairy intolerance) and you add pollen into the mix, their allergic reaction may be even more intense. These sensitivities to some degree are cumulative to each other. If we can get a handle on the food or dietary allergies/sensitivities plus the environmental sensitivities, the patient not only learns what their triggers may be but can get good results naturally without having to rely on medications for relief.