You Can’t Stand The Clutter
No one likes a dusty pile of magazines, or a closet full of cobwebs. Besides being mentally draining to look at, these areas collect tons of dust and can make allergies worse. “Clutter is your worst enemy when it comes to ridding your apartment of allergens,” said Smith. “If youâre not using it, throw it out. Keep your apartment clear of any spots that can easily fill with dust.” A minimalist, zen lifestyle may do your nasal passages some good.
What Can I Do If My Allergy Meds Aren’t Workingor My Allergies Are Getting Worse
If you’re already taking OTC allergy meds , allergy shots, a.k.a. allergen immunotherapy, make your immune system less reactive to allergens , and for some people, they can even induce a cure, says Dr. Parikh.
By giving small increasing doses of what you are allergic to, you train the immune system to slowly stop being as allergic, she says. This is the best way to address allergies, as it targets the underlying problem and builds your immunity to a specific allergen.
The downside? Allergy shots are a bit of a time commitment. You’ll need to get them once a week for six to eight months, then once a month for a minimum of two years, says Dr. Parikh. You need to be a little bit patient, too, because it can take about six months to start feeling better . But a life without allergies? Sounds worth it to me.
What Should I Feed My Allergic Lab
Most common dog food brands on the market offer hypoallergenic formulas. These recipes are free of some of the most common allergens we talked about earlier: corn, soy, beef, chicken, chicken eggs, fish, and wheat. They might also contain novel ingredients like pheasant or buffalo. Which dogs wont typically have been exposed to before and might be less allergic to.
You can also consider feeding a raw diet consisting of unprocessed meats and veggies. Whichever method you choose, change your Labs diet gradually to avoid stomach upset.
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Cooling Your Face With Some Eye Stones
Sometimes allergy relief looks like self-care. If your eyes are puffy from intolerable itchiness, maybe youd benefit from a pair of eye stones, which you first refrigerate and then place gently on your eyes.
If anything, the cooling sensation will feel good and, maybe even better, the stones will force you to rest in one place and just relax after a frustrating day of allergies.
An Air Purifier Can Help
Now that you know what the top symptoms are for dust allergies, you may be thinking, Im pretty sure I have it. What can I do about it?
If possible, the best thing for you to do is perform a deep cleaning of the area thats causing you the most problems. Then, add an air purifier to the space.
What this product does is constantly strips the air of any dust particles and dust mite waste that may try to make their way back into the room.
Take a look at our article on the best air purifiers for dust mites and why they work so well.
If you have a dust allergy, this simple device can help you eliminate dust particles and dust mites from your home.
Having an air purifier in the space that collects the most dust can drastically reduce your allergy issues.
About Katherine Dyson
Katherine is the lead Staff Writer. She conducts in-depth research and interviews with industry experts in order to produce a wide range of content for the site. Her main role is to write helpful articles that aid people who are seeking to improve their indoor air quality and comfort.
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How Are Fall Allergies Treated
If autumn hits and youre constantly sneezing or dealing with itchy eyes, its likely that youre allergic to something in the air. Allergies dont have a one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to treatment, but the AAFA says there are several over-the-counter options you can try to keep your symptoms at bay:
Nasal corticosteroids or decongestants both work to minimize nasal swelling, which causes a stuffy, runny, or itchy nose. Just note that you should limit decongestant use to a day or two, otherwise your symptoms may get worse. Try NasalCrom Nasal Allergy Symptom Controller.
Corticosteroid creams and ointments help treat itchy rashes and keeps them from getting worse. Try Cortizone-10 Maximum Strength. See your doctor if you dont see improvement within a week.
Antihistamines or mast cell stabilizers come in variety of forms, like tablets, liquids, and nose sprays. Because they block the release of histamine, you should see an improvement in common symptoms like sneezing, itching, watery eyes, and hives. Try Claritin 24 Hour Non-Drowsy Allergy RediTabs.
Be sure to discuss these treatments with your allergist, who may also recommend allergy shots, prescription-strength meds, or carrying an EpiPen if your symptoms become severe.
Additional reporting by Alisa Hrustic
You Feel Woozy After Painting
Sure, your apartment looks great after a fresh coat of paint. But did you know the vapors can really do a number on your allergies? “All paints produce vapors that create not only chemical odors in the air, but also an allergic reaction in many people. Coughing, runny nose, sore throat and congestion are standard reactions to paint fumes sufferers may also experience itchy and watery eyes,” noted Josh Patrick on Livestrong.com. If that sounds like it could be the case, look for paints labeled low-VOC or no-VOC , and breathe freer in your domain.
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Mold Allergies In The Winter
Your mold allergy may make you miserable in winter. Airborne molds are well-known causes of allergic rhinitis and asthma symptoms. They can be present outdoors and indoors. Indoor mold contamination can be present year-round and often depends on moisture levels in the home.
In colder climates, molds can be found in the outdoor air starting in the late winter to early spring, especially during the rainy season. Additionally, indoor mold levels are higher when outdoor mold levels are higher, and the outdoor environment is a common source of indoor mold.
Changes In The Weather And Allergies
Even if you don’t have allergies, the changing season can set off nasal issues such as sinus pressure, congestion and a runny nose not to mention a general crummy feeling. For people with allergies, variable weather, changes in barometric pressure and rain can exacerbate symptoms.
“Somehow these changes in the environment directly irritate the lining of the nose, and the sinuses in general,” Dr. Schaffer said, although the mechanism explaining how and why weather worries the nose is not entirely known, he added.
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What Allergy Treatments Are Available
Treatments can help a great deal, says Dr. Hsu. Allergy treatment has changed over the past 10 years, with a number of first-line medications now available over the counter, she says. So, while we have lots of consultations with patients, we dont necessarily send a prescription to the pharmacy. We often advise people on what to buybut we want to be very specific, because there are certainly a lot of over-the-counter medications that we would not recommend as first-line treatments.
For instance, she might start with antihistamines for itching and runny nose, steroid nasal sprays for nasal passage congestion, and antihistamine eye drops for ocular symptoms. If a patient is still uncomfortable, she might recommend a decongestant, but not for daily use, since its a medication patients can become overly reliant on. Likewise, some patients should avoid antihistamines that are excessively sedating, she says.
The problem is that some people think theyll just grin and bear it. But… you can take steps to minimize those weeks of misery.Yale Medicine pediatric allergist Stephanie Leeds, MD
Its helpful when patients have a skin or blood test to find out exactly what they are allergic to. If you are really symptomatic, its helpful to get tested at least once. I dont think you need to be re-tested year after year, but at some point, establishing the specific triggers can be helpful, because then you can take steps to avoid exposure, Dr. Leeds says.
So How Can You Tell If Your Cough Is Due To Allergies
First, evaluate the typeof cough you have. Allergies can cause a dry cough or wet cough , Dr. Bassett says, but post-nasal drip typically leads to a dry cough. The AAAI also points to a chronicdry coughmeaning it has lasted for more than three weeksas a sign of allergies.
You can also determine the difference by looking at the bigger picture and seeing what other symptoms are present, Dr. Bassett says. Seasonal allergies often present with an itchy nose, throat, and eyes, which is pretty uncommon with respiratory illnesses.
- How did your coughing start? Colds tend to come on slowly, while allergies kick in as soon as youve been exposed to an allergen.
- Are you itchy? Itchingespecially in your nose, eyes, or throatis a classic sign of allergies.
- Do you have a fever or body aches? Respiratory illnesses can cause both, but allergies dont.
- How long have your symptoms lasted? If your symptoms stick around for weeks or even months, allergies are probably to blame.
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How Do I Alleviate Hay Fever Symptoms
Hay fever sufferers should check pollen counts daily and stay inside wherever possible when the count is high. You should ideally keep your windows closed, especially in the early morning when pollen is being released into the air and in the evening when pollen begins to fall to ground level again.
According to Allergy UK, you could avoid worsening symptoms but wearing wraparound sunglasses and a hat with a peak when you do have to be outdoors, to stop allergens from getting in your eyes and onto your face.
Wearing a face mask may also help stop allergens from getting onto your face.
Medication such as antihistamines and nasal steroids can be very effective when used correctly. You can also do a nasal rinse with saline solution that will help wash away allergens from the nose and can be used as frequently as required.
The NHS says you should not cut grass or walk on grass, spend too much time outside, keep fresh flowers in the house, smoke or be around smoke, or dry clothes outdoors – as they might catch pollen.
When To Seek Medical Care For Indoor Allergies
If the symptoms of the allergic reaction worsen or do not improve with removal of the allergen, call a physician. If you are having persistent nasal, eye, or chest symptoms, see your doctor. If your respiratory problems are severe , go to the emergency department or seek care from your physician as soon as possible.
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Weeds And Pollen Become Rampant During Longer Summers
Balmy temperatures let much of the country hit the beach for a few extra weeks each yearbut while your spirits soar, so do ragweed and pollen counts.
Counts usually drop significantly by the first week of September, explains Joseph Leija, M.D., founder of the Gottlieb Allergy Count, which provides the official allergy count for the Midwest. But when it gets rainy, grasses and weeds grow out of control depending on where you live. This can include the following:
Ragweed in particular seems to wreak havoc between August and November, reaching peak levels in mid-September. Just one ragweed plant can product up to 1 billion pollen grains and it can travel far, especially in the Eastern and Midwestern parts of the country, the AAFA says.
What Makes Seasonal Allergies So Bad Some Years
Many people who suffer from seasonal allergies often find some years they have little or no allergy symptoms, than the next year their allergies may return with vengeance and they suffer day to day the entire allergy season. This is one reason why people often fail to prepare for allergy season, because the last year was not that uncomfortable for them they do not bother to get their shots or stock up on their medicine. The biggest impact on how a bad the allergy season will be is the weather.
A very wet and rainy spring is often the start of a terrible allergy season. The more rain, the more plant and mold growth there will be. The next ingredient is dry and naturally warm weather. Lastly mother nature blows the pollen and mold spores around, higher winds pick up the pollen and spread it around which is great for plant reproduction but not so great for allergy sufferers.
Obviously there are certain places that are worse to live for people with seasonal allergies. Many people find when they move their allergies go away. Others find that their allergies start once they move to a new place. Some people who have severe allergies will sometimes even relocate to try and escape their allergy symptoms. This years worst city for spring allergies in the United States or allergy capital is Lexington, Kentucky according to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America. The list like the weather varies from year to year in exact ranking but many repeat offenders appear every year.
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Allergies Are Going To Get Way Way Worse
Researchers estimate that pollen counts of all varieties will double by 2040 in some parts of the country, depending on what pathway the world takes on greenhouse gas emissions. Heres how scientists project allergy risks from tree pollen will change in the eastern United States under a high greenhouse gas emissions scenario:
Heres the trajectory for ragweed:
And heres what to expect for grass pollen:
This means that regardless of your pollen of choice, the future holds more misery for allergy sufferers. And as the Covid-19 pandemic rages, it may be a long time before millions of Americans can breathe easy.
How Are Allergies Treated
There’s no cure for allergies, but symptoms can be managed. The best way to cope with them is to avoid the allergens. That means that parents must educate their kids early and often, not only about the allergy itself, but also about the reactions they can have if they consume or come into contact with the allergen.
Telling all caregivers about your child’s allergy is also important.
If avoiding environmental allergens isn’t possible or doesn’t help, doctors might prescribe medicines, including antihistamines, eye drops, and nasal sprays.
In some cases, doctors recommend allergy shots to help desensitize a person to an allergen. But allergy shots are only helpful for allergens such as dust, mold, pollens, animals, and insect stings. They’re not used for food allergies.
To help kids avoid airborne allergens:
- Keep family pets out of your child’s bedroom.
- Remove carpets or rugs from your child’s room .
- Don’t hang heavy drapes and get rid of other items that allow dust to build up.
- Clean when your child is not in the room.
- Use special covers to seal pillows and mattresses if your child is allergic to dust mites.
- If your child has a pollen allergy, keep the windows closed when pollen season is at its peak, have your child take a bath or shower and change clothes after being outdoors, and don’t let him or her mow the lawn.
- Keep kids who are allergic to mold away from damp areas, such as some basements, and keep bathrooms and other mold-prone areas clean and dry.
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Altered Sense Of Taste
“Sense of smell and taste tend to go hand in hand, and when you can’t smell, it can impair or alter your sense of taste,” says Shainhouse. “Allergy sufferers may think food tastes off or needs salt or heat or spices because they can’t taste anything or because flavors have become significantly dulled.” Not only is this frustrating, but all that extra sodium and spice could lead to unintentional overeating and some serious weight gain.
Has Lockdown Affected Hay Fever
Another factor that may be causing worse hay fever symptoms this year could be a weakened tolerance to allergens, such as pollens, due to the coronavirus lockdown.
Over lockdown, there was a decrease in the number of people catching viruses apart from Covid-19, such as the flu and the common cold. This was because people spent more time indoors and when they were out and about, they usually wore a face mask.
According to pharmacy industry newspaper PM Live, homes can also contain allergens for days at a time, which could lead to heightened allergy symptoms despite staying indoors more often.
Allergy UK produced an interactive Allergy House to help people pinpoint some of the most common allergens found in their homes.
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Your Allergies Linger Into The Winter
When it’s no longer pollen-y spring, or humid summer, you’ve got to wonder what else could be causing your allergens to stick around. Often, it has to do with mold, and its annoying, allergy-inducing spores. It can often creep up in your bathroom, or behind the refrigerator, so keep an eye on these areas. “Mold likes humidity,” said Ellen Greenlaw on WebMD. So don’t take a shower without the fan on, fix leaky plumbing and pipes, and clean your bathroom on the regular. It should help keep the dreaded stuff from spreading.