Friday, 7 February 2014

Is it Harder to Treat Perennial Allergic Rhinitis or Seasonal Allergic Rhinitis?

I have always wondered who has it worse? Those with seasonal allergic rhinitis, who cannot step out of the house without constantly sneezing during the season or those with perennial allergic rhinitis like me, who gets it all year round (but usually due to indoor allergens) but happy to be outdoors? Well, I figured that no one has it better really, especially when it comes to allergies!

And so after my allergic rhinitis & Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) series with Registered Acupuncturist Ka Hang Leoungk, I pondered over it and asked her which is easier to treat. In case you missed it, this was an earlier Q&A with her.


Question:  In your experience of treating allergic rhinitis patients, is it harder to treat those with perennial allergic rhinitis than seasonal ones?

Ka Hang LeoungkYes, perennial allergic rhinitis is harder only because the irritant may be around the patient. It’s like treating a typist for carpal tunnel, acupuncture would relieve the symptoms but it will inevitably come back because it’s a constant aggravator if she continues to type every day. The main problem I have experienced is the patient does not stick with the treatment plan because it can take many months so in their minds, acupuncture is not as effective. This is understandable and why I think an honest explanation of expectations is so important. However, every individual is different and some respond better whereas there are also season allergy sufferers who only come for a few weekly sessions sporadically and in that case acupuncture is not good for them either.