Ditch The Air Fresheners
While air fresheners and candles can help your home smell great, they are also releasing tons of toxic fumes and chemicals into your home, which you are then breathing in. Take a look at the ingredient list on your favorite candle or air freshener. If you cant pronounce or recognize any of the 20 plus ingredients, it might not be a good idea to be actively breathing them in. Instead, opt for natural candles or essential oils. There are plenty of candles out there that contain natural ingredients like soy or beeswax while perfumed by natural essences or essential oils. And, a lot of them even look cute.
Essential oils can also be an excellent alternative to your Bath and Body Works air fresheners. Essential oils such as lemongrass and eucalyptus can also play a dual role in helping your house smell amazing while also having the proven natural ability to purify and clean the air. All youll need is an oil diffuser, which comes in many different sizes and designs to fit your particular need or aesthetic. By utilizing natural options and cutting out on the toxins you breathe in, you stand a better chance at helping your respiratory system and fighting those irritant-induced allergy symptoms.
Over The Counter Medications
Pharmacies stock medications known as anti-histamines. These medications block the chemicals that cause spring allergy symptoms. Start taking them before your spring allergies begin.
Sedation is the most common side effect of these medicines. Your body should adjust to the medicine within a few days.
Foods That Fight Spring Allergies
Thanks to climate change, every allergy season is the worst allergy season ever. Higher levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere have led to more potent and allergenic pollen, while warmer temperatures have led to earlier springs and longer allergy seasons. That certainly bodes well for birds and cherry blossom festivals, but it could leave you feeling miserable if you suffer from spring allergies.
The good news is that natural allergy relief is within an arm’s reach of your refrigerator: Foods rich in vitamin C and folic acid help reduce the inflammation associated with allergic reactions, and studies are finding that some herbs are just as effective as expensive drugs.
Grab your grocery cart and stock your produce bin with these 15 natural allergy remedies.
The article15 Foods That Fight Spring Allergies originally ran on RodaleWellness.com.
Broccoli serves two purposes in annihilating your allergy symptoms: It’s high in allergy-relieving vitamin C and it’s a member of the crucifer family, plants that have been shown to clear out blocked-up sinuses.
Researchers have found about 500 mg of vitamin C a day can ease allergy symptoms, and just 1 cup of raw broccoli packs about 80 mg.
To hit that 500 mg vitamin C level from whole-food sources, you can also turn to oranges, grapefruit, lemons, and limes. A large orange, which is also one of the 12 greatest disease-fighting foods, contains nearly 100 mg of C, while half of a large grapefruit contains about 60 mg.
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Become A Plant Parent
Becoming a plant parent is all the rage now. Plants are fun, aesthetically pleasing, and can purify your air while taking your home décor to the next level. Indoor plants can help purify your air by removing chemicals and pollutants such as formaldehyde, xelene, benzene, carbon monoxide, and tolune while also producing and circulating oxygen throughout your home. Houseplants can be so beneficial that NASA even recommended the best air purifying plants, including snake plants, areca palm, spider plants, aloe vera, and a rubber plant.
In addition to producing oxygen and clearing out toxins, these plants are also known to help with breathing disorders, sleep apnea, and promote healthy overnight sleep. All of these plants are also easy to care for and require low maintenance. Who knew purifying your air could also double as a home décor project? An important thing to note: some plants can be toxic to pets, so before you create your indoor jungle, make sure your plants wont harm your fur babies.
Are There Ways To Minimize Exposure To Spring Allergies
The thing about allergies is the more exposure you have, the worse they get. So, in the spring, sadly, that translates into the more youre outside, the more significant your symptoms will be. The good news is you dont have to live in a bubble all spring: You can take steps to avoid pollen at its peak. Here are some ways to avoid seasonal allergens:
- Check daily pollen counts for your area: The National Allergy Bureau is a good place to start. When pollen counts are high, try to limit how long youre outside.
- Wear a mask when you go outside: You can limit this to when your allergies are really bad, as the mask may help keep some of the pollen from entering your nose and mouth. The best masks for filtering pollen include N95 and FFP2 masks.
- Take a shower in the evening: Make sure to do this after you plan to stay inside for the rest of the night. This can help remove pollen you cant see . Otherwise, the pollen can build up on your pillow and bedding, leaving you a sneezy mess in the morning.
- Keep your windows closed: This goes for your home and car to keep pollen out.
- Use high-efficiency particulate air filters: If you use these filters in your HVAC system, they can help catch other circulating allergens in your home, such as animal dander, so you dont have to deal with even more allergy and asthma symptoms.
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Control The Humidity In Your Home
Another good thing to invest in is a humidifier. A humidifier will help to reduce particles in the air. Humidity levels of 30-40 percent have shown to decrease airborne pathogens, and in some instances, removing those allergens altogether. Additionally, humidifiers can help your body maintain its defense systems and keep your nose from drying out too much, which can get pretty uncomfortable when youre suffering from allergy symptoms.
A humidity level of 30 percent can keep your nose and throat from drying out by helping your body create a healthy mucus layer not to have your nose and throat cracked. While that may be a little gross, it is a helpful tip for keeping your uncomfortable allergy attacks at bay. Its important to make sure your humidifier levels stay around 30-40 percent. Once you hit levels of 50 percent and up, the air can become too moist and lead to the creation of mold spores and dust mites, which is quite the opposite thing you want to happen if you suffer from allergies. Keep your humidity levels regulated and your humidifiers cleaned often, and it can help reduce seasonal allergies and their side effects.
Consider Professional Allergy Testing
If youve tried over-the-counter medicine and other strategies but still suffer each year from spring allergies, it may be time for a professional allergy test. These tests can pinpoint the allergens most troublesome to you, enabling better treatment.
If youre ready for more help with bothersome spring allergies, the team at Florida Ear Nose Throat & Facial Plastic Surgery Center is here to help. Contact the office to schedule an appointment.
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Tips For Avoiding Springtime Allergies
Most allergies are the result of breathing in pollen that plants produce in the springtime. When pollen counts are high, stay indoors if possible. This is arguably the most effective way to avoid pesky springtime allergies. Staying inside on peak days will limit your exposure to allergens.
If youve already been exposed to pollen, you can use over-the-counter medicine to help control your springtime allergies.
What Are The Symptoms Of Spring Allergies
When you have seasonal allergies, youre likely to experience some or all of the following every year around the same time, generally starting in February, March, or April:
Fatigue or general malaise
In rare, severe cases, fever
These symptoms can dramatically affect your quality of life. But with a little preparation, you can reduce the severity of your symptoms and possibly prevent them altogether.
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How Many People Suffer From Allergies
According to Dr. Eidelman, one out of five people has some sort of allergy and the intensity can range from very mild to severe.
He says people with mild allergies tend to just grin and bear it. They may not have any particular need for medication. If their allergies are a little bit more intense, they may take over-the-counter medications as needed.
But as you get further along that spectrum, the severity of the illness can become disabling. People feel very sick, they cant get out of bed, they cant sleep it can be intense. So, it all depends on where they are on that spectrum of intensity, he says.
How Bad Can Spring Allergies Get
People can be very miserable. Their eyes can become itchy and swollen, their noses get congested, they sneeze a lot and if they have asthma, their lungs can become irritated.
Dr. Eidelman says if you have allergic rhinitis or nasal allergies, things can get really bad and may affect your quality of life quite significantly.
People might have trouble working or going to school. They may have trouble sleeping and they often feel tired. Even if they try to get enough sleep, its not normal sleep. So, work presenteeism can be quite common. This is when people show up to work or school but they cant function at 100% because theyre kind of out of it like they feel when they have a cold or the flu.
According to the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, allergies are the sixth leading cause of chronic illness in the United States. The annual cost from all of this is around $18 billion per year.
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Tips To Avoid Seasonal Allergies
Here are some general tips to ensure your senior loved ones minimize their exposure to seasonal allergies:
- Avoid contact with anyone suffering from a common cold
- Ask someone else to mow the lawn as the grass cuttings are packed with pollen
- Wear a face mask if they cant avoid going outside when someone is cutting the grass
- Avoid hanging their laundry outdoors. Use the tumble dryer instead
- Wash hands frequently, especially when returning from outside
- Limit going outdoors when the pollen count starts to climb
- Always keep their doors and windows closed when the pollen count rises
- Install an air humidifier inside the house to generally improve indoor air quality
- Clean the AC filter so it runs efficiently
- Recognize what triggers their allergies to prevent exposure
- Check with their doctor if they manifest any telltale signs of seasonal allergies
Going out is highly beneficial to everyones mental and physical health. Its even more important for seniors. No one should be deprived of inhaling the fresh air that spring brings.
So, grab some UV rays and boost your immune system but take proper precautions if you suffer from seasonal allergies.
If you find the symptoms are dragging you down, you could consider trying some OTC solutions. Well explore some of those right now.
What Causes Allergies In The First Place
Scientists dont know exactly why we have allergies. But one study did find a fossilized molecule in chickens that provides a clue. Lihong Y, et al. . Chicken IgY facilitates allergic airway inflammation in a chemical-induced murine asthma model by potentiating IL-4 release. DOI: 10.1016/j.toxlet.2015.08.1108
In essence, its an ancestor to the molecule that causes modern humans to have allergic reactions. This shows that allergic reactions began developing at least 160 million years ago. Science is freaking neat.
And have you ever noticed how some people dont seem touched by hay fever? Not. One. Damned. Bit. Like many other things, allergic reactions depend on both your genes Morin A, et al. . Combining omics data to identify genes associated with allergic rhinitis. and your lifestyle. Chong SN, et al. . Epidemiology of allergic rhinitis and associated risk factors in Asia. DOI: 10.1186/s40413-018-0198-z
Other lines of research may shed more light on this mystery. One article suggests that bigger families and farm life reduce the frequency and severity of seasonal allergies. This is commonly known as the hygiene hypothesis. Genuniet J, et al. . The combined effects of family size and farm exposure on childhood hay fever and atopy. DOI: 10.1111/pai.12053
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What Causes Allergies
The human body works in mysterious ways and performs many very important functions. One of these functions is reacting to eliminate harmful foreign particles from our bodies. That works well for dealing with most viruses. But, in the case of those who suffer from allergies, their bodies are perceiving otherwise harmless substances as a threat and launching an attack to get rid of the allergens. Our immune systems product antibodies called Immunoglobulin E and, when faced with certain allergens, sends IgE to sites like our nose, lungs, throat, sinuses, ears or skin to get rid of the allergens.
We experience these symptoms during times of the year when certain plants that we are allergic to begin to bloom. This happens not only outside, but also indoors. Pollen can enter our homes on our clothing, in our hair, through our pets, or carried on the wind through open windows and doors.
Fortunately, there are steps we can take to help ease the misery that can come from spring allergies both outdoors and inside.
No Need To Be Bashful
Let your well-being take center stage. Our wellness programming nurtures every dimension of your wellness: physical, social, emotional, mental, spiritual, and more. Enjoy a foundation of healthy meals prepared from scratch, energizing activities planned on and off campus, and a program of Fit and Friendly fitness classes that keeps you at your vital best. Spring, summer, winter, fall theres no time like the present to reach out and learn more about Holly Hall, a community where you can be Happy year-round.
Were here to serve you.
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Talk To Your Clinician
If youve tried preventative measures and over-the-counter meds and youre still suffering from seasonal spring allergies, talk to your clinician about other treatment options. For severe allergies, Nice Healthcare can refer you to an allergist, who can provide skin and blood tests and administer shots that deliver small doses of the allergens youre allergic to, so you build immunity.
Spring allergies are no fun. But they are preventable. If youre already experiencing seasonal allergies, some of these tips may still bring you some much-needed relief. But if youre struggling to alleviate your symptoms, talk to your clinician about additional treatment options.
Nice offers a variety of services to benefit patients with seasonal allergies. Our virtual and in-home primary care visits and prescription management services make it fast and easy to connect with a healthcare provider who can help you find relief.
If youre a patient looking for more information on our primary care services, .
If youre an employer who would like to know more about how you can help your employees manage their seasonal allergies using Nice Healthcares services, .
Break The Cycle And Stop Spring Allergies Before They Start
If you’ve tried preventative measures with no luck, it’s time to call an allergy specialist. Your regular doctor may be a good place to start, but for long-lasting relief and symptom management, getting comprehensive testing is the best route.
At Wyndly, we offer a simple and effective at-home testing kit that provides you with an allergen profile that tells you exactly what triggers those irritating symptoms. You’ll also meet with one of our allergy doctors to develop a personalized treatment plan that will get you on the road to living symptom-free.
Start today by taking our quick, two-minute assessment and be one step closer to long-lasting allergy relief!
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How To Deal With Allergies
If you find yourself dealing with a serious case of springtime allergies, consider talking with your doctor about the following allergy relief routes:
- Saline Rinse Rinsing your nasal passages with a saline solution is a quick, inexpensive and effective way to relieve nasal congestion. Rinsing directly flushes out mucus and allergens from your nose.
- Allergy ShotsAllergy shots act like a vaccine, triggering your bodys immune response to fight allergies naturally. They are a method of long-term treatment that help decrease symptoms for patients with severe allergies.
- Antihistamine This type of medicine suppresses your bodys natural histamine levels. Some options can cause feelings of sleepiness, so consulting with your health care provider is essential before taking an antihistamine.
Your health care provider may also be able to offer additional allergy relief options that may align better with your personal health and avoid any unforeseen complications.
Remedies You Can Do At Home
Allergy patients can benefit from a wide range of natural treatments.
1. Inhaling Steam
The practice of inhaling steam is quite common. Therapists recommend it because it helps relieve and open blocked nasal passages caused by allergic rhinitis.
How do you do it? Place a bowl of boiling water on a table to inhale the vapor. Breathe in the vapors by covering your head, face, and bowl with a towel. Remember, when working with boiling water, use caution to prevent burns.
2. Rinse With Saline
Thinning down the nasal mucus with a saline rinse can help ease nasal congestion and stuffiness. You can also use the solution to remove allergies from the sinuses and nose. There are several non-prescription saline rinses available.
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