Sublingual Immunotherapy (SLIT)
If you have been to any of my lectures you will have heard me say, “One out of two children has one out of 20 chronic diseases, from asthma, ADHD, and food sensitivities to autism and seizure disorders.” This current generation of children are in toxic overload from the food they eat, the water they drink, and the air they breathe. So many very knowledgeable parents come to me having tried everything to get their child’s immune system to a state where it is properly responding, not over or under-reacting to everyday things in their environment.
This last November, I took a plane out to Minnesota and then drove over two hours to the little town of Onalaska to meet with Mary and her team about sublingual immunotherapy or SLIT. I spent a day and a half in their clinic learning about their systemic approach and how I could bring this technology back to the children in Sonoma County. One of the things that impressed me the most was this center has treated over 190,000 patients WITHOUT ANY INJURY. The alternative to SLIT is allergy shots. There have been many injuries and even some deaths directly related to injection therapy. I knew instantly that treating the allergies with SLIT was a no-brainer in terms of safety.
Needless to say, I was convinced. Having studied the pediatric immune system extensively in these past few years, I can say with confidence that this treatment should be the standard of care for pediatric patients. It provides the opportunity for true healing AND has an incredible safety profile. The important piece of this treatment is that is “Stops the Allergic March,” To read more about my visit to Minnesota, click here.
In addition to safety and efficacy, this therapy is done mostly at home. Instead of having the child come into the office for painful (and expensive) bimonthly or monthly injections, the drops are taken daily at home. There is an initial consultation where I look at the child’s immune system in depth, as well as their growth and development, and together you and I decide what to test. Looking into what plants and trees actually grow in our area, I have put together a panel specific to this area to make the testing more cost effective. We will go over and select any foods that may be further triggering the immune response. After this initial blood test (I am also a pediatric anesthesiologist and have worked with the TINIEST of veins and have personally trained my staff to PAINLESSLY obtain the blood sample), the sample is sent to Wisconsin for testing. After the results are obtained, a custom blend of allergy drops are created for your child. Within two weeks, we give the first dose in the office as a precautionary measure. After that, the therapy continues at home.
The total duration of treatment is between two and five years, but most patients start to have relief within 30 days! In fact, the hardest part about this therapy is sticking to it because the child starts to feel better so quickly. There are check-in appointments every three to six months (more commonly every six months) for a repeat blood test. Since this therapy combines the problem (the allergen) with the solution (the instructions for the immune system), the drops need to be re-calibrated about twice a year as the immune system gets “smarter.”
To find out more, make an appointment with me by calling 707-292-8882 and ask for a pediatric-specific SLIT consultation. I look forward to bringing my pediatric immune system expertise to help your child live allergy free and truly thrive!