Spring Allergy Prevention Tips
It's spring! We made it through snowstorms and below- freezing weather (in some parts of the country), and several bouts of flu. While the warm, breezy spring days are right around the corner, so are seasonal allergies. And though you’ve hoped to leave symptoms such as coughing, itchy eyes, a runny nose and a sore throat behind, sometimes seasonal allergies are unpreventable. But, never fear! You can take steps to make your symptoms a little more manageable.
- Know what triggers your allergies. Whether it’s pollen, mold, trees or grass, you have many different agents to which you could be allergic. Identifying what causes your symptoms can make it easier to prepare yourself and recover. If you’re unsure what triggers your symptoms, it can help to find an allergist in your area.
- Check the news. A lot of news stations or news websites forecast daily levels of pollen in your area. This will help you determine how long you may need to limit your exposure to the outdoors (if possible) or if you should take an antihistamine. You can also try visiting: https://www.pollen.com. Here you can type in your zip code to find the top allergens in your area and pollen counts for that week.
- Be prepared with over-the-counter medications. Antihistamines such as Claritin™ or Zyrtec™ can help relieve your itchy eyes and runny nose. On the other hand, if your nose is stuffy, you can also try decongestants such as Sudafed™ or Afrin™ to provide some relief. If you still can’t find relief, you can try a nasal spray or sinus rinse to help ease your symptoms. Always check with your doctor or allergist before trying a new medication.
- Stay active. It can be hard to exercise if you’re feeling a little “under the weather” with allergies, especially if you like to go outside. However, studies show that regular physical activity can help decrease your allergy symptoms by improving blood flow in your body. In this way, it’s easier for your body to remove allergens from your system.
- Try some local honey. Research shows that even a couple tablespoons of local honey can help relieve your allergy symptoms. This is because honey contains local pollen that may be causing your allergies. While this might seem counterproductive, it can help relieve itchy watery eyes and congestion.
- Know when it’s time to talk to your doctor. While seasonal allergies can be manageable, sometimes they can turn into something else—like a sinus or ear infection. It’s best to check with your doctor if you’re unsure.
Don’t let your allergies stop you from enjoying the spring. Whether you go hiking, swimming, walking or biking, just try some of these tips to enjoy the beautiful spring weather that is soon to come!