How to Give an Allergy Shot

Allergy shots contain epinephrine and are used in cases of emergency when you or your child has an extreme allergic reaction. Using an allergy shot can prevent you from going into anaphylactic shock or losing your ability to breathe due to a swollen airway. Without them, you may not have time to get to a hospital before your reaction becomes fatal. They’re designed to be used safely by people with no medical training, as long as you follow the exact instructions. Once you administer the allergy shot, seek medical help immediately.

Step 1

Call for emergency medical help immediately. Elect someone to call for you if you’re not alone.

Step 2

Know where your allergy shot is at all times. Locate it at the first sign of an allergic reaction. Do not wait to see how serious the reaction becomes before you administer the shot. If you’ve been prescribed an emergency-use allergy shot, it’s because your allergic reactions can be severe or life-threatening.

Step 3

Remove the source of the allergy if possible. Spit out food you may have accidentally consumed. Remove the insect stinger if possible. Get to a place where the allergen is no longer present. If you can’t accomplish this within a few seconds, skip this step and go right on to administering your shot.

Step 4

Open the package and take the safety cap off of your injector.

Step 5

Hold the injector over your outer thigh, about 4 inches above your skin.

Step 6

Thrust the injector into your thigh. The needle will spring forward automatically and can go through your clothes. Remove your clothes only if it can be done easily, such as by lifting up your shorts or skirt.

Step 7

Leave the injector in place for 10 seconds. Remove it and discard.

Step 8

Massage the injection location for 10 seconds to help speed medication delivery.

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