What Is Causing That Congestion
When you are congested, even the simple act of breathing can be a chore. Whether the source of the congestion is a sinus infection, allergies, a cold, or the flu, sinus congestion can really clog things up for you and leave you feeling tired, dreary, and pretty much unfit for fun or a fully productive day at the office.
Many things can cause nasal congestion, doing so by irritating or inflaming the nasal tissues, whether it be a cold, flu, or allergies, per . Or it could be an airborne toxin such as tobacco smoke, the exhaust from a car or truck, or pollutants billowing out of industrial smokestacks.
Furthermore, it isn’t just the mucus inside your nose that is clogging the passageways and making you talk funny . Also blame it on the blood vessels that are at work in and around your nose. “The nose has a vast network of blood vessels with valves that open and close,” says Dr. Scott P. Stringer, a University of Mississippi Medical Center professor, quoted at . “When the nose is stimulated by any irritant, the nervous system is also stimulated, causing valves to open, which results in more blood entering the nose. This causes swelling in your nasal passages, which makes it difficult to breathe.”
Disinfect Your Supplies With A Cpap Sanitizer
It’s essential to keep your CPAP germ-free so you don’t get sick on top of having allergies. Sometimes symptoms of allergies can be mistaken for symptoms of a cold, but you won’t realize you’re sick until you come down with a fever. Or if your allergies aren’t treated effectively, your immune system can be weakened and the introduction of viruses can cause your allergies to turn into a sinus, ear, or upper respiratory infection.
There are automated CPAP sanitizers that kill 99% of germs and bacteria and require no hand washing, soap, or water. The , , or are all great sanitizing options that act as a preventative measure to ensure that you don’t add on to your allergies.
Find Relief From Fatigue Caused By Allergies
Fatigue can be caused by allergies and this can be frustrating. But it doesn’t have to be forever. Diagnosing and treating your underlying allergies is the best way to find relief from your symptoms, get better sleep, and wake up feeling rested. Being tired can negatively impact your quality of life in many ways, but an ENT expert can help you address your issues and get back to a life free from fatigue from allergies. Schedule an appointment to discuss your allergy symptoms with a specialist today.
How Do Allergies Affect Sleep
Allergens irritate your nasal passages when they enter your nose, triggering uncomfortable symptoms like nasal congestion, sneezing, and watery eyes. These symptoms affect your ability to breathe easily and tend to worsen at night — two reasons why allergies commonly lead to poor sleep quality.
If your allergies keep you up at night, you may be missing out on sleep. Without a good night’s sleep, you end up feeling tired and grumpy . Being tired can impair your performance at school and work, negatively affecting your and wellbeing. Poor sleep also heightens anxiety and response, which in turn, makes it harder to fall asleep.
Allergies don’t just impact your ability to fall asleep; they also interfere with your ability to stay asleep. People with allergies may wake up due to a congested nose, sneezing or coughing fit in the middle of the night. Over time, this kind of allergy-induced sleep deprivation adds up, creating a vicious cycle that leads some to rely on sedatives or to help them fall or stay asleep — which is not a good idea.
Dust Your Furniture Regularly
Go a week without vacuuming or dusting your furniture, especially in a sunny well lit room and you’ll notice a film of dust collecting on bedside tables, dresser drawers and any other surface that doesn’t get touched often.
If you don’t have a regular cleaning routine that includes dusting and often wake up with a stuffy nose, dust mites may be to blame. A dust mite allergy is more common than you might realize.
You may be at higher risk for dust mites too if your bedroom decor includes large heavy drapes, lots of decorative pillows and upholstered furniture. Carpeting, shaggy rugs, stuffed animals, dolls, and books are also dust traps that need to be vacuumed often or dusted regularly.
Know When Its Time For A New Mattress Or Pillows
Maybe it’s time to replace your mattress during allergy season
Many people don’t realize that their issues with allergies may due to their pillows or mattresses. If you haven’t replaced your pillow or mattress in some time, then it may be time for you to replace your mattress and your pillows.
Your mattress and your pillow are both very absorbent and are made with materials that can hold in mold, bacteria, dander and other allergens. These things may be living in your mattress and making your allergy symptoms worse. So, if you have tried all of these approaches to lessening your allergy symptoms and still aren’t finding success, then consider getting a new pillow or mattress. As you shop for a new organic mattress, make sure to look for one that is made out of organic materials and one that is naturally hypoallergenic—meaning it can help you in the long term with your allergy issues.
Make Your Bedroom An Allergen
Focus on keeping your bedroom free of allergens. Airborne allergens collect on bedding, under beds and dressers, and on curtains. Wash your bedding frequently using hot water, put allergy covers on your pillows and mattress, and routinely dust the furniture and vacuum the floor.
It also helps to eliminate certain fabrics because they harbor dust, pollen, and pet dander. If possible, get rid of carpeting and curtains and instead use hardwood flooring and blinds that are easy to clean.
Take your clothes off before you go into the bedroom to be sure you don’t carry outdoor allergens into the room. Allergens in your hair carry over to your pillow and trigger your symptoms. The best way to solve that problem is by showering every night.
And we’re sorry to say that if you’re allergic to pet dander, you should keep animals out of your bedroom.
Sleeping With A Partner With Allergies
If your sleep partner experiences nighttime allergy symptoms, there are ways to ensure that you can get a good night’s sleep as well. If your partner’s symptoms cause them to snore, an easy and inexpensive option is earplugs— these are widely available at grocery stores and pharmacies.
If you prefer some pleasant ambient noise, I recommend using a white noise sound machine. Depending on what model you select, these machines can play either soothing sounds, gentle white noise, or both to help you sleep.
If you want the best of both worlds, I recommend using Bose Sleepbuds II. These aren’t like regular earbuds though— these only play calming audio from Bose’s Sleep app, which is designed to help you fall and stay asleep while any background noise is dampened by Bose’s noise-masking technology. They are also carefully crafted to not be disruptive during sleep.
I’ve partnered with Bose because of their commitment to creating a positive, restful bedroom environment, as well as paving the way for a better night’s sleep.
Reduce Pollen And Dander Exposure
Lifestyle changes can really help people with allergies. For example, some allergy sufferers benefit from keeping windows closed when pollen counts are high and using air conditioning at home and in the car. For some people with pets, their allergies improve when they have their animal companions sleep outside of the bedroom. If this applies to you, consider creating a nice place for your pet to sleep at night that is in a different part of your home rather than the bedroom. Keeping pets out of the bedroom during the daytime can help too, because it will reduce pet hair and dander. Don’t forget to wash your hands after petting your fuzzy companions to prevent allergens and dander from moving onto your nose or eyes. Showering before bed can also help in removing any pollen and dander that you may have attracted, leading to a cleaner nighttime routine. You might also consider investing in an air purifier to reduce allergens that come from pets.
Allergies And Sleep Apnea: The Cpap Connection
However, when discussing allergies and sleep apnea, another factor often comes into play: Allergic reactions can disrupt the CPAP therapy often used to treat sleep apnea.
Manufacturers of CPAP masks and sleep apnea therapy equipment have taken steps to help you get around potential problems caused by the presence of both sleep apnea and allergies. For instance, if allergies make breathing through your nose difficult, you’re more likely to experience effective treatment from a full face mask than from a nasal pillows mask. While a nasal mask only delivers air through your nose, a full face mask covers your mouth and nose, ensuring that you still receive air whether your nose is congested or not.
In addition, advanced CPAP technology in the form of APAP – or automatic positive airway pressure, as we recently discussed – can help people who have both allergies and sleep apnea. How? Allergies can cause your breathing to fluctuate throughout the night, and APAP is designed to deliver different amounts of air as needed to keep up with those fluctuations.
If your allergies are interfering with your sleep apnea therapy, we encourage you to talk to your doctor or sleep therapist about possible solutions, such as switching to a different CPAP mask, or a different type of PAP therapy machine.
This blog post contains general information about medical conditions and potential treatments. It is not medical advice. If you have any medical questions, please consult your doctor.
Tips To Sleep Better With Spring Allergies
With all of the talk about the COVID-19 pandemic, worrying about your allergies seems less important. However, if you have seasonal allergies, it’s hard to breath well during this time of year when everything is blooming. If you can’t breathe well due to congestion, sleeping becomes more difficult. So, what’s a person to do? Here are five tips from SleepBetter that are designed to help you get a better night’s sleep while the pollen is flying.
In the end, for most people at least, the spring allergy season lasts only a few weeks to a month. If you can make it through that time without becoming severely sleep deprived, you’ll find that your nose and head are clearer as we head into summer.
Ensure That Pets Are Well
If you own a pet, shampoo it as much as possible to remove pet allergens and pollen particles, or ban it from the bedroom completely.
“Loss of sleep because of hay fever is very significant, as it can impact how a person functions the next day at school or at work,” Wiseberg says. “The effect of sleep deprivation on productivity and health loses costs companies billions of dollars each year.”
Allergies That Affect Your Sleep
Though any type of allergy could interfere with your sleep, airborne allergens that you breathe in are the primary culprits of nighttime allergy symptoms.
That includes allergies to:
These allergies trigger nasal congestion that makes it hard to fall asleep, wakes you during the night, and rouses you too early in the morning.
As anyone who’s ever had a cold knows, the nasal congestion alone interferes with your sleep. But other allergy symptoms also contribute to the problem. A runny nose, sneezing, postnasal drip, and an itchy nose, mouth, or eyes can all sabotage your sleep.
There’s another problem you may encounter when your allergies cause a stuffy nose at night. The congestion affects the pressure in your upper airway, which blocks air flow and makes you briefly stop breathing. This condition, called sleep apnea, can happen frequently during the night.
Every time you stop breathing, your brain nudges you back to consciousness just enough to take a breath and resume breathing. You probably won’t know it happened, but it still disrupts your sleep.
Keep Bedding And Fabrics Clean
Vacuum the house regularly, especially beds and fabrics, such as bed covers and curtains, to remove pollen, dust, and pet allergen particles. Wash bedding regularly to remove allergens and dry them indoors rather than on a clothesline to prevent pollen particles from being blown onto them by the wind.
What Causes Allergies Anyway
An allergic reaction is a chain reaction that starts in your genes and is expressed by your immune system, according to the American Academy of Allergy Asthma & Immunology .
When you have an allergy to something, like pollen or grass, your immune system views it as an invader . It then overreacts by producing antibodies called Immunoglobulin E , which travel to cells that release chemicals called histamines, Dr. Monteleone explains. Cue the stuffy nose, , sneezing, and other uncomfortable symptoms.
Ensure A Healthy Recovery By Keeping Your Cpap Allergen
It’s easy for airborne germs and allergens to stick to your CPAP equipment and make your symptoms last even longer. Disinfect your supplies with a CPAP sanitizer to keep your CPAP germ-free.
The Sleep8 is a great sanitizing option that acts as a preventative measure and helps ensure that your allergies don’t get worse. It features:
- Ozone technology: Kills over 99% of harmful viruses, bacteria, and mold
- One-click cleaning: Just press a button to start
- Complete compatibility: No adapter needed to use with any mask and machine
- Ozone technology: Kills over 99% of harmful viruses, bacteria, and mold
- One-click cleaning: Just press a button to start
- Complete compatibility: No adapter needed to use with any mask and machine
Save $100 when you buy the Sleep8 today!
Hide Out When Allergens Are In The Air
Hot, dry, and windy weather can each send dust, pollen, and molds skittering through your windows at home, work, in your car’virtually everywhere. So stay indoors with windows closed when those conditions are present during your allergy season. Schedule shopping and outdoor activities when it’s windless, cloudy, or even rainy. There’s less pollen in the air.
How Can Allergies Affect Your Sleep
Allergy symptoms can disturb you whether you are awake or asleep. They can keep you awake due to incessant coughing and sneezing, troubled breathing, and fatigue. This disturbance in sleep can make you feel tired and sleepy all through the day which leads to decreased productivity at work, school, and impaired learning. All this leads to and reduces the quality of life. The degree of sleep impairment depends on the severity of the symptoms of allergy.
Extreme allergies can lead to snoring or obstructive sleep apnea, both of which can prove to be harmful to health and are linked with poor performance in school, low IQ and even brain damage.
Obstructive sleep apnea is a sleep disorder in which the breathing is interrupted during sleep. It occurs when the muscles in the throat relax and fail to hold the airway open during sleep. Nasal congestion can lead to narrowing of the upper airway, which can cause snoring and obstructive sleep apnea in patients with allergic rhinitis. Treating nasal inflammation or allergic rhinitis can reduce the symptoms of snoring and obstructive sleep apnea, it plays the role of a major risk factor in their occurrence.
Can’t Sleep Because Of Seasonal Allergies Reasons And Solutions
When allergies cause sleep problems, it can make a household miserable. We can’t sleep because we can’t breathe, so we endure night after night of broken sleep, wake up crabby, and then do it all over again during allergy season.
Let’s face it: seasonal allergies — also called hay fever and allergic rhinitis — can make us all miserable, either because we are first-hand sufferers or because we live with first-hand sufferers.
Allergic rhinitis affects up to 40 million Americans. That’s a lot of miserable people who may become even more so if they don’t get their sleep as a result.
Tips To Reduce Allergies At Night
To reduce allergies at night, keep your surrounding -free.
- Wash bedsheets on a weekly basis. Deep clean the entire bedroom and carpets and wipe down hidden surfaces every month to get rid of mold, dust mites, and pet dander.
- Use dust covers on the bed to keep dust mites away.
- Invest in anti-allergy bedding that uses specifically manufactured fibers to keep allergies at bay.
- Use high-efficiency particulate absorbing filters. Air purifiers are recommended as a way to remove allergens. Take medicines that contain histamines.
Try A Nasal Aid Or Other Decongestant
Nasal decongestants are a good way to combat nighttime stuffiness. For instance, Nasal Aid is a strip that goes over the bridge of your nose and helps expand your nasal passages during sleep. This makes it easier to utilize a nasal or nasal pillow mask.
Users can also take advantage of over-the-counter nasal spray or antihistamine sprays.
When To See A Specialist
Did you know that you are not able to sneeze when you are asleep? This means that one of the most important ways of ridding your body from allergens, sneezing, is unavailable while you sleep. This can lead to a worsening of symptoms that will wake you up.
Keeping your sleeping environment, your body, and your sleep clothes clear from allergens certainly cannot hurt you and often is enough to give you a comfortable night’s sleep. But, for some, it isn’t enough and the only available option is allergy medication.
If your allergies are making it difficult to sleep at night, contact Carolina Asthma and Allergy Center today. Since 1952, Carolina Asthma and Allergy Center has served the Charlotte metropolitan area. Today, the center has 12 offices in and around Charlotte. All the 14 allergists at the center are board certified by the American Board of Allergy and . To make an appointment at an office near you call 704-372-7900.
Other Tips For Lessening Nighttime Allergies And Getting Better Sleep
Here are some of our top tips for getting your night allergies under control and your sleep back on track:
- If you think it’s indoor mold that’s worsening your nighttime allergies, make sure you have adequate ventilation in every room of the house. This goes double for kitchens, bathrooms, and basements, where humidity levels can change more often.
- For indoor mold allergies, you also want to use dehumidifiers in the above rooms, as these keep too much moisture from forming.
- Make sure your home doesn’t have any pipes or roof seals with leaks. If you spot these, get them repaired.
- For those with cockroach allergies, call an exterminator. They can tell you if there are any upstairs gaps where cockroaches can get into your bedroom. For instance, they may squeeze in through a window, a crack in the wall, or a small crevice.
- After you’re done spending time with your pet, change clothes and wash the ones you wore while spending time with your animal. Don’t bring clothes into your bedroom unless they’re clean.
- If you have a dust mite allergy, wash your sheets and other bedding at a high temperature, at least 130 degrees Fahrenheit. The hot water will help remove any lingering mites.
- Make sure you change and clean your bedding every week to keep dust mites away.
- Get plastic or fabric covers for your pillows, box spring, and mattresses so dust mites can’t get into your bed.
Certain Allergy Medications Can Worsen Fatigue
Even though they work to relieve some symptoms, certain allergy medicines can actually make you more tired. Antihistamines in particular have been known to cause drowsiness, however, most newer, second-generation pills are designed to be non-drowsy. Still, it is important to always read labels carefully, and consult with a doctor if unsure which allergy medications may cause increased fatigue.
Discover The Source Of Your Symptoms
You may already believe that allergies are the root cause of your fatigue and other symptoms, but there may be more to it than that. An ear, nose and throat specialist can fully examine to make sure other issues such as sinusitis or deviated septum aren’t causing or worsening your issues. They can also conduct an accurate allergy test to find out exactly which allergies you have, and how severe each one may be. Common triggers of allergies include dust mites, mold, pet dander, and pollen.
How Can Allergies Affect Your Sleep & How To Sleep Well Even During Allergy Season
Seasonal allergies or allergic rhinitis, occur when the allergens in the air are inhaled by the patients who are allergic to them. This leads to irritation and inflammation of the nasal passages. The allergens include dust mites, pollens, molds, and pet dander. If the allergy comes over with the change of season, it could be related to the trees, grass, pollen, or ragweed, and if it is persistent throughout the year then the allergy might be related to dust mites, mold, or pet dander. The allergens trigger the release of chemicals in the body which can lead to nasal congestion, watery eyes, and runny nose.
The allergy symptoms can lead to difficulty in sleeping at night, daytime sleepiness, and fatigue. A study conducted depicts the people who suffer from allergic rhinitis say their allergies interfere with the sleep.
Keep Your Sinuses Clean
Do you know what’s even better than trying to adjust your sleeping position to accommodate congested nasal passages? Preventing those passages from getting congested in the first place.
This isn’t always possible of course, but there are ways you can try to reduce congestion, especially during peak allergy season.
Allergy Final Relief Program : Sublingual Immunotherapy
What is SLIT?
Sublingual immunotherapy treats the underlying cause of environmental and seasonal allergies by giving small doses of the allergen to the patient. Exposure to these small doses over time desensitizes the immune system and increases tolerance to the allergens which subsequently reduces the allergenic symptoms.
How does SLIT work?
An initial scratch test is done to determine which allergens you are reactive to. The first dose of the indicated allergen/s is given in the office. Subsequent daily doses of the allergy drops are taken at home. Retesting after 6 months of treatment will determine whether the drops are still needed.
SLIT is given as drops under the tongue. Research shows that when an allergen is presented this way, the immune system learns to tolerate the allergen. The results is less allergy symptoms when the body is exposed to the allergy source such as airborn pollen or pet dander.
SLIT or Allergy Shots
Like injection therapy, SLIT directly changes the body’s ability to react with allergens. Allergy shots are effective, but need to be given in a physician’s office. This inconvenience results in high drop off rates or many patients, Sublingual immunotherapy offers a great alternative treatment option for people reluctant or unable to undergo allergy shots.
The advantages of SLIT
1. More convenient than shots
Few clinic visits and less time away from work. The first dosage is taken at our office.
2. See lasting results
3. Better quality of life