Spring should be an exciting time! The weather is getting nicer, everyone’s going outside more and summer is just around the corner. Unfortunately, for many with seasonal allergies that just means itchy eyes, a runny nose and feeling miserable all-around.
The good news is that there are steps you can take that can help with those allergies. Here are our 10 Quick Tips about Allergies:
1. Identify the Cause. It’s difficult to manage your allergies if you aren’t sure what they are. Therefore, you must first identify what’s causing your allergies so you can look for a solution. For example, if you have a pet and your allergies tend to act up when you’re around your animal, he/she may be the culprit.
If you can’t figure out what’s causing your allergies, ask your doctor for a skin test. Your doctor will test you with different allergens to see if you have a reaction.
2. Check the Weather. Did you know weather stations and websites give you the allergen count for the day? Check this every morning. If the allergen count is quite high, find something you can do inside that day.
3. Eliminate and Control Your Allergies. Once you’ve discovered the cause of your allergies, you can begin working on a solution to eliminate that cause. Many people have pet allergies but they don’t want to part with their beloved animals. If you fall into this category, here are a few things you can do:
For Pet Allergies:
- Give your pet a bath. It could be that your animal has been bringing in allergens from outside and it’s not your pet that you’re reacting to.
- Keep your pet out of your bedroom, creating a pet-free zone in your home.
- Pull up carpeted floors. Hardwood floors and tile collect less allergens.
- Brush your animal outside regularly (or have a family member do so) so allergens are not trapped in their fur.
- When picking out furniture, choose leather sofas over fabric because they are easier to wipe off and clean.
4. Check Windows and Filters. Although it’s great to enjoy that cool spring breeze through your window, leaving your windows open, even a small amount, can let in the main cause of spring allergies—pollen. To help reduce your allergies, change the filters in your house each season so you can remove any pollen, dust or mold that has collected there and then turn on the air conditioner to air out your house. If that doesn’t help, use an air purifier with a HEPA filter. These are great for getting rid of lingering allergens.
5. Wear Sunglasses. Not only will sunglasses protect your eyes from the sun, they will protect them from floating allergens. Wearing sunglasses is especially important on windy days.
6. De-Stress. Stress can make your allergic reactions worse. For ways to relieve some of that stress, see our latest article, 10 Natural Remedies for Anxiety and Stress.
7. Shed Pollen at the Front Door. Pollen can cling to your clothes and the bottom of your shoes, so when you get back home and walk around, the pollen spreads throughout the house, increasing the severity of your allergies. When you come in from outside, always leave your shoes at the front door. If you experience really bad allergies, shed your clothes at the front door and jump in the shower. (Make sure you turn the bathroom fan on to keep humidity levels low and to prevent mold from developing—another major allergy trigger).
8. Work out. Running for at least 30 minutes, or getting some type of workout so you sweat, has proven to ease sneezing, runny noses, nasal congestion and itches by almost 85 percent. Sweating can help ease your inflammatory response. However, if you run outside, make sure you go in the afternoon so the pollen count is lower. If you have severe allergies, work out at a gym or at home instead of going outside.
9. Seek Treatment. There isn’t a shot that can cure your allergies, but there are some things that can help reduce your allergy symptoms. Antihistamines and decongestants are the most common. If you try this for allergy relief, make sure you take your antihistamine before bed because some can make you drowsy.
Nasal sprays and eye drops can also help reduce your inflammation and help with your allergies. If none of those methods do the trick, get an allergy shot so you can finally start feeling some relief.
10. Eat Foods that Reduce Allergens
- Water. Drinking plenty of water helps your immune system and keeps your sinuses hydrated.
- Tea. Green tea and chamomile tea contain anti-oxidants and anti-histamines, which can boost your immune system’s endurance levels.
- Yogurt. One study done on people who consumed yogurt on a daily basis found that the people in the study had lower levels of an antibody that produces allergy symptoms. The study was done by the Institute of Food Research in the U.K.
- Fruits. Vitamin C, found in fruits, acts as an anti-inflammatory that can counteract allergic reactions. To feel the full benefit, eat a large amount of fruit gradually throughout the day. Eating too much at once can upset your stomach.
- Onions and Garlic. Incorporating onions and garlic into your meals is a great preventative method for your allergies. These herbs contain a flavonoid that inhibits inflammatory reactions.
- Omega 3 Fatty Acids. Foods containing Omega 3 Fatty Acids reduce the production of inflammatory chemicals in your body and are a significant anti-allergy mineral. Some of the foods that contain Omega 3 Fatty Acids include: Flax Seeds, Fish and Walnuts.
- Rosemary. This herb has been known to minimize allergic reactions. You can use rosemary to flavor meats, seafood and fruits.
Allergies can really hinder anything you had planned for the day, but following these quick tips can make all the difference. Whatever your allergy may be—whether it’s due to pet dander, pollen, mold, etc.—avoid what’s causing it and search for a solution that can help ease your discomfort like the suggestions listed above.
Do you have allergies? In what ways have you been able to find relief?