10 Tips to Survive the Pollen Season If You Have Allergies

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The early days of spring marks the beginning of the pollen season. While trees, grasses and weeds produce different amounts of pollen at different times of year — as well in different regions — you can expect to see a higher pollen count during spring than most other times of years. For most Americans, pollen isn’t a problem. But for the nearly 8% of Americans who suffer from seasonal allergies, it can cause a myriad of symptoms such as sneezing, runny nose, nasal congestion, headache, sore throat, watery eyes, red eyes, itchy eyes and general fatigue. If this sounds familiar, consider the following tips to survive the pollen season.

 

#1) Wear a Dust Mask When Mowing the Lawn

Depending on where you live, you’ll probably need to mow your lawn about once or even twice a week during spring. Unfortunately, though, this can often trigger allergy attacks due to the large amounts of pollen shuffled into the air from a lawnmower. While hiring a professional landscaper to mow your lawn is the ideal solution to prevent allergy attacks, you can do it yourself by wearing a dust mask. A dust mask will protect your nose and mouth from pollen that could otherwise trigger an allergy attack.

 

#2) Leave All Doors and Windows Shut

Avoid leaving your home’s doors and windows open during the pollen season. When open, pollen will float into your home where it coats your furniture, floors, counters, walls and other surfaces. But if you keep the doors and windows shut, you’ll minimize the amount of pollen entering your home.

 

#3) Stay Indoors During the Morning

You won’t always have the luxury of choosing when you can and can’t go outside, but when you do, avoid going outdoors during the early morning hours. According to Pollen.com, pollen count is typically the highest between the hours of 5:00 a.m. and 10:00 a.m.

 

#4) Wear Sunglasses When Outdoors

The primary purpose of sunglasses is protect your eyes form sunlight, which can cause permanent damage to vision with its ultraviolet (UV) rays. There’s another reason to consider wearing sunglasses during the pollen season, however: They protect your eyes from allergy-inducing pollen.

 

#5) Don’t Re-Wear Clothes Without Washing Them

It’s usually okay to wear the same shirt or pair of pants for two or more days. If a garment isn’t visibly dirty, you may be able to wear it again. Unfortunately for allergy sufferers, this isn’t possible during the pollen season. Failure to wash your clothes after wearing them means that pollen will likely be caked on the surface, increasing the risk of an allergy attack the next time you wear the pollen-covered garment.

 

 

#6) Check the Pollen Count

During the pollen season, be proactive in checking the pollen count in your city or county. You can usually find the local pollen count on your local news stations’ websites or social media accounts. On days with a high pollen count, try to spend as much time as possible indoors so that you aren’t exposed to high concentrations of allergy-causing pollen.

 

#7) Run Your Air Conditioner

Even if it’s not particularly hot outside, running the air conditioner in your home may help by reducing the frequency and severity of your allergy attacks during the pollen season. An air conditioner will help remove pollen and other pollutants from the air inside your home, which could prevent allergy attacks or reduce the severity of them.

 

#8) Place a Misting Humidifier Next to Your Bed

Dry air increases the risk of allergy attacks by allowing pollen to float through the air with greater ease. Therefore, it’s recommended that you place a misting humidifier next to your bed. The humidifier will release a mist-like vapor of water particles that moistens your nose and lungs while also slowing down pollen floating through the air.

 

#9) Eat a Healthy Diet

Your diet can affect the severity of your allergies during the pollen season. If you diet consists mostly of pro-inflammatory foods, for example, it may worsen the symptoms of an allergy attack. To survive the pollen season, choose foods that reduce or suppress inflammation. Fruits are an excellent source of anti-inflammatory compounds. Arguably the best source, however, is fish. Whether you prefer salmon, tuna, tilapia, flounder, trout, etc., fish contains omega-3 fatty acids that have similar anti-inflammatory effects as ibuprofen. When included as part of your regular diet, fish will curb your immune system’s hyperactive response to pollen.

 

#10) Choose Antihistamines Carefully

Antihistamines are highly effective at preventing and treating allergy attacks because they reduce the histamine response by the immune system. Not all antihistamines are the same, however, and it’s important to choose the right type. First-generation antihistamines are known for having a fast, long-lasting sedative effect that leaves you feeling drowsy and sleeping. Second-generation antihistamines, on the other hand, don’t suffer from this problem.

 

Don’t let allergies or other health conditions prevent you from enjoying life. To learn more about our integrative medicine services, contact us today.

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