The onset of spring, brings warmer days and for those with allergies, stuffy noses and burning eyes. There is much we don’t know about the why certain individuals are hit so hard by allergies but those who endure seasonal allergies can tell you it makes their days less than pleasant. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, you may want to consider some of the following suggestions.
When you find yourself suffering with allergies, there are some steps you can take to reduce your suffering.
Drug Free Allergy Relief
The first thing to look at is your actual living or work spaces. Many individuals regularly place themselves in home or work environments that exacerbate allergy symptoms. Pay attention to the rooms you spend time in. Is your office in the basement where the mold and mildew count may be higher than the rest of the house? Is there some landscaping planted right outside a window that is open all summer?
One of the most common household allergens is pets. I see many allergic individuals who live in a house with dogs or cats. While I can appreciate the love and companionship that animals bring us, they can bring misery to those who are allergic. If someone in the family has allergies please try the following suggestions to reduce severity of allergens in the house. Consider eliminating all carpeting in the house, or have your carpets professionally cleaned and disinfected on a regular basis. Also upgrade your air filter if you have forced air heating/AC to one that is electric or HEPA grade and clean or replace them every season. Have all duct work cleaned and disinfected at least annually. Finally, have pets trained not to climb onto specific furniture (beds, non-leather couches).
Dust and dust mites are common allergens. Even for individuals not allergic to these items, dust can exacerbate an ongoing allergy. Dust mites are little bugs that eat dead skin flakes, and can be found in bedding. Pleasant thought isn’t it? You can find both mattress and pillow covers that protect your bedding from dust mites at most stores that sell bedding. In addition, washing of sheets on a weekly basis will help eliminate dust mites. When projects require you to be in dusty areas, consider wearing a mask to protect you.
Nasal irrigation can also help reduce allergy symptoms. It can also help reduce suffering from the increased colds and sinus infection allergy sufferers have to endure. Initially practiced in Indian medicine with a neti pot, nasal irrigation cleans the nose and sinus of allergens and excess mucus with a gentle saline solution. Nasal irrigation systems can be found now at most drug stores.
Herbal remedies can also provide allergy relief, reducing or eliminating the need for over the counter or prescription allergy medication. A combination of quercetin and bromelain can inhibit mast cells, the first cells effected in an allergic process. Many patients find relief from this combination with none of the side effects of traditional antihistamines.
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Helms, S & Miller, A (2006). Natural Treatment of Chronic Rhinosinusitis. Alternative Medicine Review: A Journal of Clinical Therapies. 11(3) 196-207.
Shaik, Y.B., Castellani, M.L, Perrella, A, Conti, F., Salini, V., Tete, S., Madhappan, B., Vecchiet, J., De Lutiis, M.A., Caraffa, A., Cerulli, G, (2006). Role of quercetin (a natural herbal compound) in allergy and inflammation. Journal of Biological Regulators and Homeostatic Agents. 20 (3-4) 47-52.