Investing In A Quality Vacuum
It isnt fair that you have to suffer from allergies and clean more often to feel better, but such is life. Pollen and other allergens can get trapped in your rugs and carpets and continue to haunt you, so get to the root of the issue by sucking these allergens out of your house.
One Hoover model is especially good for combating pet hair. A Dyson is also adept at capturing pet hair, allergens and truly anything else on your floors . Or you can go with an iRobot, which is strong on dust and best of all hands-free.
You may want to ask a family member or roommate to empty the vacuum for you so you dont have to suffer from all of the allergens youve finally captured.
Why Are My Allergies Getting Worse
Tuesday, May 4, 2021
Allergy patients have reported worsening symptoms that last longer than the usual allergy season. Amanda Dilger, MD, a member of the Comprehensive Otolaryngology and Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery divisions at Mass Eye and Ear who researches environmental impacts on health care, explains the effects of climate change on allergies and how to treat worsening symptoms.
Seasonal allergies affect a quarter of the worlds population, and those who spend the spring and fall stocking up on tissues, nasal sprays and eye drops may have noticed an alarming trend in recent years. The runny nose, watery eyes and sneezing symptoms that used to occur only once or twice a year have lasted well beyond traditional allergy seasons and have become much more severe.
I keep seeing patients whose allergies are getting worse not just in the spring and the fall, but year-round, Dr. Dilger told Focus. What most people dont realize is that climate change is a major contributing factor.
Things To Try If Your Allergies Are Worse Than Ever This Year
If youre really feeling it this allergy season, well, gesundheit. From sneezing to congestion to itchy eyeballs to a relentless runny nose, there are plenty of signs that allergy season is upon us and youre unfortunately one of its victims.
There are a host of factors that affect the strength allergy season not just from year to year, but from day to day, saidLuz Fonacier, an allergist and immunologist and president of the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. Among these factors are climate change, rainfall and even wind.
Since so many factors contribute to high pollen counts, its all but impossible to predict how intense an allergy season will be, Fonacier told HuffPost. In addition to taking steps to limit your exposure to allergens that affect you, seeing an allergist before the season starts can also help ensure you find relief.
For many, the last few weeks have been miserable. Before reaching for over-the-counter allergy relief, its important to get a diagnosis, Fonacier said. An allergist has advanced training and experience to properly diagnose your condition, identify your triggers and prescribe an allergy treatment and management plan to help you feel better and live better.
So on your next trip to the pharmacy, be ready. The following tips and items may help mitigate the many annoyances that come with seasonal allergies, so they might be worth a try.
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How To Alleviate Your Allergy Symptoms
Leeds recommended wearing a brimmed hat and sunglasses to keep pollen out of your eyes and nose. A solid rinse can also work wonders after spending time outside.
Wash your hands and face after being outdoors for long periods of time, and consider changing your clothes, she said.
If you are particularly sensitive, limit your time outdoors on poor air-quality days. Consider washing your eyes and nose with a saline solution. You might also want to swap out your contact lenses for eyeglasses, as pollen can cling onto lenses and irritate the eye. Cleaning your lenses more frequently and opting for daily disposable contacts can also help relieve itchy, watery eyes.
Pollen can get trapped inside your home, so keep your windows shut and car doors closed. Vacuum often to get rid of allergens trapped in your carpet. If you have AC, set it to nonrecirculated air.
AAFA also recommends using a HEPA air filter to purify the air in your house. And pets can be pollen magnets, so giving them a good rub down is a good idea after a springtime walk, Gupta said.
You might also want to hold onto your face mask a bit longer. The masks we use to protect ourselves against the coronavirus act as a barrier against pollen, too. The better the mask, the better the protection.
N95 masks are ideal for this, but standard masks most people are using to protect one another from COVID-19 also work, Mendez said.
Global Warming Is Making Ragweed Pollen Season Worse
For many people, the fall means colorful leaves, cozy sweaters, pumpkin spice and allergies.
In late summer and fall, ragweed blooms and releases pollen into the air.
It affects our eyes, our nose, gets into our mouth, says Linda Walden, a family physician in Cairo, Georgia.
She says the pollen triggers an inflammatory response in the body, with symptoms ranging from itchy eyes and a runny nose to congestion.
It can also worsen asthma, especially in children and older adults, and it can cause worsening of COPD, she says.
And climate change is making the problem worse. When temperatures are warm and theres more carbon dioxide in the air, ragweed produces more pollen. Meanwhile, ragweed seasons are getting longer.
So to protect yourself, Walden suggests staying inside on dry, windy days when the pollen count is high.
If you have to get out, definitely wear a hat or sunglasses to keep it from getting it all into your hair or your eyes, she says.
She says the masks that protect against COVID-19 can also help keep pollen out of your mouth and nose.
And for allergy sufferers, medications such as antihistamines may provide relief so they can better enjoy the beauty of fall.
Reporting credit: ChaveBart Digital Media
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Why Are My Allergies So Bad In The Fall
Unfortunately for allergy sufferers like me, allergies are not just a springtime nuisance. There are many fall allergens that can cause the same annoying symptoms. “Allergies in the fall can be as intense as spring for many people,” Neeta Ogden, MD, a board-certified allergist and medical advisor at Curex, told POPSUGAR. “The biggest culprit is fall ragweed, other weeds, and grasses. As the leaves and branches fall, outdoor molds can also cause fall allergies.”
Like spring allergens, these fall culprits tend to be most prevalent for a specific period of time but the climate can also have an impact. “Fall allergy season for those with weed allergies will start in August and last through October,” explained Sanjeev Jain, MD, PhD, a board-certified allergist and immunologist practicing at Columbia Asthma and Allergy Clinic. “Weather conditions such as a drought, increased rainfall, snow, temperature, and other factors can affect the length and severity of these allergy seasons.”
Providence Physicians Recommend Stress Management To Strengthen Your Body Against Allergies And Getting An Allergy Test To Learn More About Your Triggers
Itchy eyes and a runny nose signal this time of yearallergy season. But have you noticed something new this year? Are your allergies worse than last year? Does it seem like they’ve been getting worse every year? If so, youre not imagining it.
Seasonal allergies, also known as hay fever or allergic rhinitis, are more common than ever, and there’s been a spike in the number of people reporting them for the first time.
Some symptoms are due to environmental factors, while others are caused by conditions at home. No matter the source, there are things you can do to alleviate the misery. Here are the top culprits making your allergies worse each year, and ways to find relief.
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It’s Peak Time For Pollen
Holly Shaw is the nurse advisor for Allergy UK. She says this year has been especially busy for people who work in allergies – but not because symptoms are really much worse this year.
“When the Covid-19 pandemic first hit, we noticed that people came in saying their appointments had been delayed or postponed,” she tells Radio 1 Newsbeat.
Like so many other medical needs, allergy treatment was delayed because of the number of people with Covid who needed NHS support.
“They leant towards charities even more so to support them during that time.”
And it’s to be expected that hay fever sufferers will be struggling more at the start of summer.
“At the moment we’re in the peak of a really nice warm spell, there are light winds – which is very favourable for moving pollen around – and we’re having days of high pollen counts,” says Holly.
“So it isn’t unusual for me to hear patients reporting their hay fever symptoms are really miserable.”
The start of summer is also grass pollen season – and that’s what affects 80% of people who suffer from hay fever.
Tree pollen comes in spring, grass in summer and weed pollen does the damage come autumn.
Holly says that people’s “perception” of their symptoms is probably making it feel like things are worse this year, especially after spending so long indoors.
But she doesn’t believe lockdown and self isolating will have made sufferers any more susceptible to pollen this year.
Are Your Allergies Really Bad This Year Theres A Reason For That
After more than a year of rigorous mask-wearing, its been a little surreal to see so many people pulling their coverings off while theyre outside. But besides getting used to seeing peoples chins again, you may have also noticed something else: A lot of people are looking a little red around the nose. Maybe youre even feeling it yourself. Seasonal allergies have been absolutely killer this year. But are they worse than usual, or are we just noticing it more right now, since with the end of the pandemic hopefully in sight, were all going outdoors more often and ditching the masks that may have kept pollen away from our nostrils last year?
Plants breathe in carbon dioxide, and carbon dioxide levels are increasing on Earth as a side effect of , allergist and immunologist Purvi Parikh, MD, told Well+Good. Its like the plants are on steroids, with mega-pollinator plants producing more pollen and for longer periods of time.
Other factors can also contribute to making airborne pollen even more volatile right now. Pollution like diesel exhaust and nitrogen oxide can lead to the creation of super pollen and very irritating air that triggers sneeze and mucus production, internist and immunologist, Tania Elliott, MD, tells Refinery29. Pollen can bind to diesel exhaust and it becomes super pollen traveling longer distances and being bigger making it a more potent allergen.
Like what you see? How about some more R29 goodness, right here?
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Is There More Pollen In The Air Than Before
Yes. As the earth warms as a result of climate change, pollen season is lasting longer and there is generally more of it in the air, all of which is bad news for hay fever sufferers.
Scientists warn that this season is only going to get worse if the climate crisis continues in its current trajectory. Modelling in a study spanning north west Europe suggests that climate change will increase the severity of hay fever season by up to 60 per cent.
Allergies Are A Product Of Your Environment
Seasonal allergies occur when the body confuses harmless, airborne substances for invasive pathogens. When the body encounters higher levels of allergens in the fall and spring, the immune system responds as if under attack. This response can vary by person some people might get a runny nose in the fall, while others might experience itchy eyelids in the spring.
Plants and trees produce common allergens, such as pollen, based on the temperature and carbon dioxide levels in the environment. Climate change is associated with increased temperatures and worsening air pollution, which has had an adverse effect on the amount of allergens produced in recent years.
Since the 19th century, the average surface temperature of the Earth has increased by one degree Celsius from greenhouse gas emissions, according to NASA. The rise in temperature has lengthened traditional growing seasons, which is the time between the last freeze in the spring and the first freeze in the fall. It is when allergen levels are the highest. According to Dr. Dilger, in the past 50 years the growing season has extended anywhere from two to four weeks across the United States.
When the growing seasons extend, so does a persons exposure to allergens, Dr. Dilger explained. Its one of the main reasons why we see an increase in patients with more severe symptoms, as well as symptoms that are year-round as opposed to seasonal variations.
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Doctors Explain Why Your Allergies May Feel Worse As Those Crisp Autumn Days Set In
Ah, the cool comfort of fall. Crunchy red and gold leaves underfoot, plaid shirts on display, crisp wind in your hair, pumpkins everywhere. It’s my favorite time of year, except for one thing: annoying fall allergies are back. Why do the sniffles, sneezes, and itchy eyes make an appearance so many months after pollen picks up? POPSUGAR spoke to allergists to get to the bottom of why some allergy sufferers’ symptoms always seem to get worse this time of year.
Allergy Forecast: A Bad Year For Everyone
Like taxes, allergy season is one of those things you just cant avoid. In fact, due to climate change, it may be getting worse. Warmer temperatures lead to more pollen production, so 2021 may be the most intense allergy season yet. And due to COVID-19 quarantine, children may especially have a rough year.
When is allergy season?
It starts in the spring and continues until the fall, but different allergens, the substances that trigger allergies, appear at different times.
: As spring begins, tree pollen is the top allergen, followed by weeds and grasses. In some parts of Maryland, its not unusual to see cars covered by the itchy stuff.
May to July: In May, all the trees, grass and weeds gang up to pump out allergens, making it a bad time for allergy sufferers. This is the start of peak allergy season, which continues until July.
: Enter ragweed, a common flowering plant. Ragweed is the leading cause of seasonal allergies, with 75% of all sufferers allergic to it.
With temperatures falling and plants starting to go dormant, the air starts to clear, bringing an end to outdoor allergy season. Now its possible to breathe a sigh of relief without coughing.
See the Interactive Allergy Forecaster for allergy conditions where you live.
COVID-19 and childrens allergies
Surviving allergy season
If your or your childs allergy symptoms are severe or continue a long time, your health care provider may be able to help or refer you to an allergist.
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Is It An Allergy Or Covid
When COVID-19 and seasonal allergies are circulating at the same time, every sniffle can lead you to worry that you might have the virus. From the perspective of a parent, one of the biggest issues is when kids in school have allergy symptoms that are poorly controlled, and then the school system sends them home or says they need a physicians note, Dr. Leeds says.
The CDC has a Venn diagram that shows symptoms the two conditions have in common. These include congestion, cough, difficulty breathing, fatigue, runny nose, sore throat, and shortness of breath. But comparing the most common symptoms reveals clear differences. Seasonal allergies usually cause itchy or watery eyes and sneezing, while COVID-19 is characterized by fever and chills, muscle and body aches, new loss of taste and smell, nausea and vomiting, and diarrhea.
Because of COVID-19, people are afraid of you when youre sniffling, says Dr. Hsu. But it goes both waysa lot of people are sniffling and sneezing and coughing, and they are not getting tested for COVID-19, because they assume its allergies. And they are probably correct.
Often the distinction is clearpeople with allergies itch more, and they dont have the fatigue, malaise, and fever that comes with COVID-19. But anyone who is concerned should call their doctor, she says.
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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Spring Vs Fall Allergies
There is a stark difference between noticing the presence of allergens in the spring and the fall.
The switch from winter to spring is more noticeable. Temperatures rise above freezing and snow begins to melt, plants begin to blossom and bud, and there is more greenery. Because of the prominent changes in nature, more people seem apt to notice the abundance of grass and tree pollens.
There is a more subtle transition from summer to fall, with temperatures cooling down more gradually. The ease of transition disguises the change and the introduction of fall allergens.
In spring and summer, we have trees and grasses dominating the pollen season, Dr. Sanchez-Tejera said. That has tapered off and we have entered a new season of pollen, which is more centered around weeds.
Aside from those differences in perception, the symptoms are mostly similar. Some of those may include:
- Runny or itchy nose