Allergy Sufferers Rejoice - A Prescription Strength Nasal Spray Is Now Available Over-The-Counter

If you suffer from allergies, you know how difficult it can be dealing with symptoms. Allergy medications include antihistamines, decongestants, corticosteroids, and leukotriene inhibitors, according to the Mayo Clinic. There are also several types of allergy medications, including tablets, liquids, inhalers, and nasal sprays. Of those, the American Academy of Otolaryngic Allergy states that nasal sprays are the most effective way to combat the congestion, sneezing, and an itchy, runny nose that accompany allergies.  

While most nasal sprays are generally considered safe to use, with little side effects, some nasal sprays include steroids, and these drugs can produce side effects if used improperly, according to the National Health Service. Side effects can include dryness of the nose and throat, itchiness, and swelling. But now, a new, over-the-counter, prescription-strength nasal spray might treat allergy symptoms without the side effects that come along with using nasal sprays that contain steroids.

The drug boasts several benefits

The drug is called Astepro, and like many allergy medications, it works by blocking the histamines your body produces when you encounter allergens. WebMD reports that the active ingredient in Astepro is the antihistamine azelastine, which is approved by the Food and Drug Administration for use in people 6 years old and older.

Astepro has a few things going for it. For one, it doesn't contain steroids. Another benefit Astepro offers is quick action. Unlike other nasal sprays that can take days to build up in your system before they can begin working, Astepro begins to offer relief in as soon as 30 minutes. In addition, allergy sufferers can use the spray twice a day, whereas many other nasal sprays can only be used once every 24 hours, according to Astepro.

It's always a good idea to check with your doctor before beginning a new allergy medication. He or she can help you determine which drug can help treat your symptoms based on your medical history (via Mayo Clinic).