With spring come blooming flowers, lush green trees, and for some ill-starred individuals, allergies. Seasonal allergies are as bothersome as they come.
Sneezing, congestion, and runny nose are only a few of the symptoms one must bear if one suffers from seasonal allergies.
Seasonal allergies are pretty common but what exactly causes them?
What Causes Seasonal Allergies?
Seasonal allergies are caused when airborne allergens enter the body, usually through the nose or mouth. The immune system overreacts to these allergens and releases histamine into the nose, eyes, and lungs, which eventually leads to common allergy symptoms.
Airborne allergens can be found both indoors and outdoors. The most common outdoor allergen is pollen, while dust, pet dander, etc. come under indoor allergens.
Symptoms of Seasonal Allergies
Allergies, like any other medical condition, range from mild to severe. The most common allergy symptoms are listed below:
- Runny Nose
- Itchy Eyes
- Itchy Sinuses or throat
Many people confuse seasonal allergies with common flu because of similar symptoms. A good rule of thumb to check whether your symptoms are allergy-related or not is to keep an eye on their duration.
If you show the above-listed symptoms for more than a week without a fever, chances are that you have seasonal allergies.
Effective Tips to Control your Seasonal Allergies
Here are some effective tips for you to keep your seasonal allergies in control this season.
1. Be Aware of Your Allergy Symptoms
Some allergy symptoms can mimic certain signs of infection. Cases like these can result in misdiagnosis and later prove to be problematic.
To avoid misdiagnosing such cases, you need to expand your knowledge and skillset. Getting an advanced degree, like the online DNP nursing degree, is one way to go about it. But allergies can prove to be trickier even for veteran healthcare professionals.
When it comes to allergens, there is no cookie-cutter solution. Same irritants can affect multiple people differently.
Keep an eye out for when your symptoms appear and when they tend to get worse. Getting to know this pattern can help you pinpoint the season and the nature of allergens that you are allergic to.
Following are the most common allergens associated with each season:
- Tree Pollen – Spring
- Grass Pollen – Summer
- Weed Pollen – Late Summer/Autumn
All-year-round allergy symptoms may be caused by indoor allergens like dust, pet dander, etc.
2. Avoid Seasonal Allergens
The best way to deal with seasonal allergies is to avoid them altogether. When it comes to allergies, precaution is better than prescription.
Follow the strategies listed below to keep away from those bothersome allergens:
- Keep The Windows Shut: Wind carries the pollen everywhere. By shutting the windows, you reduce the pollen count in your house.
- HEPA Filters: Use an air conditioner with HEPA filters. They filter the indoor air by trapping allergens like pollen, dust, pet dander, etc. Be mindful to replace them regularly for best results.
- Check Pollen Forecast: Keep an eye on the pollen forecast and plan your outdoor activities accordingly. Stay indoors on the days when the pollen count is high outside.
- Use A Mask: On the days when you cannot avoid going out, always wear a mask. A mask not only protects you from pollen but also harmful atmospheric phenomena like smog.
3. Cleanse Your Nasal Passage
An irritated nasal passage is the number one cause behind those vexing sneezing episodes. Keep your nasal passage clean to avoid any such irritation.
Rinse your nasal passage with a saline solution to avoid pollen adhering to mucus membranes. Nasal sprays can also do wonders when it comes to avoiding postnasal drip and congestion.
4. Take a Healthy Diet
No matter the ailment, the importance of a healthy diet cannot be ignored – allergies are no different. Taking a balanced diet with rich nutrients can help reduce the chances of developing allergies.
Fresh fruits and vegetables, especially the ones with an abundance of antioxidants and Vitamin C can provide allergy relief.
Detox your body by cutting out alcohol, fried foods, and sugar. Drink lots of water to stay hydrated. If you cannot drink lots of water, try drinking sugar-free juices instead.
Water not only improves your energy levels, and detoxes your body, but also makes the mucus thinner, hence causing some allergy relief.
5. Clean Your House
You’ll be surprised at how many allergens you can avoid simply by cleaning your house regularly.
Don’t just sweep the floor and be done with it. Pay special attention to the nooks and crannies where dust tends to accumulate like bookshelves and vents, etc.
- Use a dehumidifier to keep the indoor air dry
- Vacuum carpets
- Replace air filters regularly
- Change pillowcases regularly
6. Include Local Honey in Your Diet
Incorporating locally-harvested honey in your diet can lead to some great results in reducing symptoms of seasonal allergies. The idea behind using honey for treating allergies is the same as that behind using vaccines.
Local honey contains pollens from the local plants, so taking a few spoonsful each day can eventually immunize you to airborne allergens in your environment.
Even if you are a skeptical person when it comes to natural remedies, there is no harm in trying out this one, as the cure is not only harmless but also pretty delicious.
7. Take The Right Medication
There is a wide range of over-the-counter nonprescription medications available to battle seasonal allergies.
As with the allergens, an allergy medication that works for one person may not work for the other, so be mindful while choosing the right one for yourself.
Decongestants and antihistamines containing cetirizine, acetaminophen, and diphenhydramine are most effective when it comes to providing allergy relief.
8. Wash Up
Just as cleaning your house is important to avoid indoor allergens, washing up is important for wiping off all the outdoor pollen that may have stuck to you while you were out there.
When you return home during allergy season, wash your skin and hair properly to clean off any pollen that may have stuck to you. Don’t forget to thoroughly rinse your nose while you are at it.
A bath will not only soothe your allergies but will also help you feel better.
Seasonal allergies are tiresome and irritating to go through, but if you take them lightly, they can be severe. When it comes to allergies, the best course of action is to nip them in the bud as soon as possible. Know your body and its triggers – pinpointing your allergy season and allergens can help you prepare for it effectively and take the right steps toward better health outcomes. Follow the above-mentioned tips to fully enjoy any season regardless of your allergies.