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薬

花粉症に効く薬アレグラの怖い秘密

薬

コマーシャルなどで最近よく耳にするお薬「アレグラ」。飲んだことがある方ならご存知かと思いますが、すごく効くんですよね。しかし、こんなすごくよく効く薬、なぜ今まで公にされてこなかったのでしょうか。

それには裏の顔があるからなんです。本記事では、薬の服用と花粉症との関係もご紹介しながら、特に花粉症と私たちへのアレグラの影響もご説明いたします。

まだアレグラに出会ったことがない方から、何度もお世話になっている方まで、最後までお付き合いいただけたら幸いです。

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花粉症と薬の戦い

くしゃみ

最初に、この辛い花粉症の症状がなにによって現れているのかご説明いたしますね。

花粉が人間の体内に入ると、鼻や目の粘膜からヒスタミンという物質が放出されます。

この刺激物質ヒスタミンが、神経や血管を刺激し、辛い鼻水や目のかゆみなどになっていくのです。

では、花粉症時に出されるお薬はなにがあるのか知っておきたいと思いませんか? 以下にまとめてみましたのでご覧ください。

  • 抗ヒスタミン薬
  • メディエーター遊離抑制薬
  • 抗ロイコトリエン薬
  • 血管収縮薬
  • ステロイド薬

この5種類が、花粉症と判断された患者さんに処方されるであろう主なお薬です。

それぞれ、目薬のようなタイプから、鼻腔に直接スプレーするタイプなど様々です。

次に薬ごとの役割を簡単にみていきましょう。

抗ヒスタミン薬

一昔前だと、この手の抗ヒスタミン薬は過度の睡眠・口内の乾きなどの副作用があり、効果はあるのですが、仕事や学校などでは使用できないほどのものがほとんどでした。昨今では、第二世代とよばれるものが出てきており、これらの症状が軽減されているものがだいたい市販薬として販売されています。

花粉が体内へ侵入してきた際に、過剰分泌されるヒスタミンを抑えるのがこの抗ヒスタミン薬です。

メディエーター遊離抑制薬

なんだか難しく発音しにくい名前ですが、「迷子のアナウンス役」と思ってもらえればわかりやすいかと思います。

過剰分泌しているヒスタミンなどを、まとめてケミカルメディエーターと呼ぶことがあります。
これらのケミカルメディエーターが、遊離、つまり勝手にどこかへいかないようにするお薬です。

抗ヒスタミン薬と違い、薬の効果が出始めるためには2週間以上、長い時は6週間にわたって投与を続けなければいけないデメリットがあります。

初期症状の際に使用すると、症状が軽くなったりする効果が得られます。

抗ロイコトリエン薬

ここから紹介する抗ロイコトリエン薬、以下2点は、特にアレルギー反応が起こっている箇所を集中的に緩和させるためのお薬となり、抗ヒスタミンと同時に処方されることも多いのでなんとなくみたことがある方もいらっしゃるのではないかと思います。

ロイコトリエンという小鳥のようなかわいい名前をしているアレルギー物質は、我々を苦しめている鼻づまりの原因でもあります。

免疫細胞と言われるところから出るロイコトリエンを抑制し、鼻腔の腫れを抑えてくれる役目があります。

血管収縮薬、ステロイド薬

前者は、抗ロイコトリエン薬の点鼻用と考えてください。抗ロイコトリエン薬は飲み薬で処方されます。

後者は、目だったら点眼、鼻だったら点鼻用のものが処方されます。いづれもその箇所でひどいかゆみ、腫れなどがでており、生活に支障をきたすものだと判断されれば、出してくれます。

お医者さんによっては、最初から処方されない方もいらっしゃるので、鼻づまりで眠れないなどがあれば、相談してみてください。患者さんの声で重い腰をあげる病院もありますよ。

アレグラの成分や効果

ヒスタミンを抑える作用やケミカルメディエーター作用が含まれているものが多く、アレルギー反応全般に適応する万能なものと知られています。

効き目がいいので、1日2回で大丈夫という、通勤や通学をしている人にとっては手放せなくなるくらい素晴らしいお薬のように思えますね。

しかし、この1日2回というは薬の成分が強いことも表しています。

特に幼児などの小さい子供へは、悪影響を及ぼす可能性が大きいので、年齢と服用できる量、また大人でも「飲み忘れた」と言って1日の量を1回で飲んでしまうと、呼吸困難などのアナフィラキシー症候群になりうる可能性が十分にでてきます。

また、以前より副作用が少なくなったとはいえ、今の今まで「処方」でしかお見えしなかったこの薬は、人によっては多少なりとも副作用があります。

  • 眠気
  • めまい
  • 腹痛
  • かゆみ

このような症状が出たら、すぐにかかりつけのお医者さんに診てもらいましょう。

アレグラを服用できない人

アレグラに限ったことではありませんが、薬の及ぼす体への影響というのは決して小さいものではありません。

特に、幼児・妊娠中の方はなるべくなら予防接種の方へ重点をおくと良いでしょう。

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まとめ

ここまで花粉症のアレルギー反応、また薬の種類などをご紹介してきました。

まとめると、

  • 花粉の侵入でヒスタミン刺激で症状が出る。
  • 花粉症への薬はお医者さんとよく相談をしてから服用する。
  • アレグラは万能薬のようだが、強い薬なので注意して服用する。

ということです。

しかし、どんなに良薬を服用していても、自身が不規則な生活を送っていると、薬の効き目も半減してしまいます。

お医者さんが処方してくれるお薬は、病床にふけっている人以外は、「規則正しい生活を送っている人」が根底にあります。

薬だけに頼らず、薬は「自分が花粉症などの異物と戦うのを補助してくれるもの」と意識しましょう。そうすることで、ちょっとずつですが、みなさんの体も「自分で治す」ということを行いはじめます。

将来的に、薬をいくつも服用している人よりも、薬知らずの健康体の方が気持ちがよいですよね。みなさんが辛い花粉症生活から、一日でも早く抜け出せるよう祈っております。

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