What Are Allergy Shots?
Allergy shots are injections of solutions containing tiny amounts of the substances you’re allergic to. The amount of allergen in the solution is increased slightly each time you get a shot until you reach a maintenance level. This usually takes about 5 to 6 months. Allergy shots are given once or twice a week at first. Then, time between the shots is gradually increased up to once a month. Shots can continue for several years or longer.
Getting Your Shots
The following may occur during your visit:
A nurse or doctor will measure the right amount of solution and inject it into your upper arm.
Depending on how many allergy triggers you have, you may get one or more shots.
You may feel a slight sting when you get the shot. Your arm may itch or feel sore in that area for a few hours afterward.
You may notice a small bump where you received the shot. If the bump turns red or hot, or swells, alert your doctor.
After Your Shots
After getting your allergy shots, you’ll need to sit in the waiting room for 20 to 30 minutes. Before you leave the office, your arm where you got your shots will be checked. This is to be sure that the site looks normal and isn’t showing signs of a reaction.
Symptoms of Anaphylaxis
In rare cases, allergy shots can cause a reaction called anaphylaxis. This is a life-threatening problem that must be treated right away with an injection of special medication. After getting your shot, call the doctor right away if you have any of the following: