By Daniel Petkevich
Nov 29, 2022
Allergies can be a troublesome aspect of daily life. They can impact your ability to enjoy changing seasons, pets, and sometimes just going outside. Luckily, Medicare offers coverage for allergy shots when deemed medically necessary. Are allergy shots right for you? Let's find out.
Allergy shots, also known as allergen immunotherapy, are a type of treatment that can be used to reduce or eliminate the symptoms caused by allergies. Allergy shots contain tiny amounts of allergens, such as pollen, pet dander and dust mites, which are injected into the body over time. The goal is for your body to become desensitized to the allergen, and eventually, you will no longer have allergic reactions. Allergy shots can be used to treat a variety of allergies, including seasonal allergies (hay fever), pet allergies and insect stings.
Allergy shots are most effective when used to treat more severe allergies, so it is important to consult with your doctor to determine if allergy shots are the right treatment option for you. If your symptoms don’t respond well to other treatments, such as medications or lifestyle changes, allergy shots may be an appropriate choice. Your doctor will also help you to identify which allergens are causing your symptoms so that they can be targeted in the allergy shots.
When receiving allergy shots, you will need to visit your allergist or doctor on a regular basis for injections over a period of time. Generally, the process starts with an injection of a very low dose of the allergen and gradually increases in intensity until you reach a maintenance dose. Your doses may be administered at more frequent intervals during this time, usually once or twice per week. As you build up a tolerance to the allergens, your maintenance dose will be spaced out more and more until it reaches every two to four weeks.
Yes, Medicare Part B covers allergy shots for people if they are medically necessary and are prescribed by a doctor. However, it is important to note that you may have to pay a copayment or coinsurance for each injection after you meet your Part B deductible. You may also be responsible for additional costs for lab tests associated with the allergy shots. Some allergy shots might be self-administered, in which case, check your Part D plan's formulary to see if you have coverage. To minimize your out-of-pocket costs, go with Medicare Supplement Plan G.
Yes, there are potential risks associated with allergy shots. The most common side effects are mild and include swelling, redness or itching at the injection site. Other more serious reactions can occur but are rare. For this reason, it is important that your doctor monitor you closely while you receive allergy shots to watch for any adverse reactions.
Results from allergy shots vary depending on the severity of your allergies and how well you respond to treatment. Generally, it can take approximately three to six months before you start seeing significant improvement in your symptoms. It is important to remain patient and consistent with your treatments as it will take time for them to be effective.
Once you start receiving allergy shots, you should monitor your symptoms closely to see how well they are responding. You should also continue to follow any other treatments prescribed by your doctors, such as medications and lifestyle changes. If your symptoms don’t improve after a few months of allergy shots, talk to your doctor about other treatment options that may work better for you.
Allergy shots can be an effective treatment for severe allergies. Medicare Part B typically covers allergy treatments, but check with your plan provider for your specific coverage. Of course, check with your doctor to see if allergy shots are right for you. This content is for informational purposes only. For any Medicare questions, talk with an expert at Fair Square Medicare today.
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