Just about any health condition can be a symptom of underlying allergies. It is very common for the allergies to go undiagnosed while the symptoms – headaches, depression, asthma, rashes, indigestion – are treated only with temporary success, possibly complicating the condition.
Allergies are overreactions of the immune system to things in the environment, such as dust, pollen, animal dander, and foods. When an allergic person’s immune system is triggered by an allergen, it causes some degree of inflammation. The severity of an allergic reaction can take the form of simple itching eyes, sneezing, and runny nose (rhinitis); skin reactions such as eczema or hives; and even life-threatening constriction of the airways.
Increasing numbers of people suffer from allergies. The prevalence of allergic rhinitis, for example, is now estimated to be between 10 and 20% of the population in developed countries. Allergic rhinitis and mild allergy symptoms are usually treated with antihistamine or decongestant medicines and sometimes with steroid medicines, but these often cause unwanted and even harmful side effects.
A systematic review was undertaken of 13 papers to ascertain the effectiveness of acupuncture for those suffering allergic rhinitis and overall compared to the placebo group, acupuncture reduced the symptoms of nasal symptoms, medication use and serum IgE antibodies (1). Whilst another review showed efficacy and improved quality of life for those suffering allergic rhinitis (2).
- Feng S, e. (2015). Acupuncture for the treatment of allergic rhinitis: a systematic review and meta-analysis. – PubMed – NCBI. [online] Ncbi.nlm.nih.gov. Available at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/?term=Acupuncture+could+be+a+safe+and+valid+treatment+for+allergic+rhinitis%3B
- Taw MB, e. (2015). Acupuncture and allergic rhinitis. – PubMed – NCBI. [online] Ncbi.nlm.nih.gov. Available at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25943957
- McDonald J, Janz S. The Acupuncture Evidence Project: A Comparative Literature Review (Revised edition). Brisbane: Australian Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine Association Ltd; 2017. http://www.acupuncture.org.au.
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