Spring is always torture for people with allergies. Usually sometime in March or April there’s a sudden shift away from wintry weather that encourages plants to release pollen into the air. Windy conditions then send that pollen into our noses, throats, and eyes. The pollen trigger allergy symptoms that range from congestion, sneezing and itchy eyes to headaches, diarrhea, and even depression. So what can you do if allergies are hitting you hard this year?
Determine if it is really allergies
Allergy symptoms and cold symptoms are very similar. And the sudden swing from cold weather to warm weather is likely to trigger either one. To avoid misdiagnosing the problem, you need to know which is which. If you’ve been congested for over two weeks, if your mucus is clear and runny, and if you don’t have a fever, it’s probably allergies. If a fever is present, if you start feeling better after a few days, and if your mucus is yellow or green, you might have a cold or infection.
You might also try a nasal irrigation system like a neti pot or sinus rinse. Neti pots and irrigators cleanse the nasal passages with a saltwater solution. A daily saline rinse helps sweep pollen and reduce symptoms from the respiratory tract. WARNING :Do not use table salt to flush out your sinuses! Use only the saline solution specifically designed for a neti pot.
Kick off shoes and work clothes as soon as you get home
Pollen is very sticky. Dragging it throughout your home on your shoes and clothes will only cause your symptoms to act up. Remove your shoes outside before you walk in through the door. Throw you work clothes in the hamper as soon as you walk in. And shower every night to get the excess pollen out of your hair and off your body. If you have an animal, wipe their paws and fur when they enter your home. Pollen can cling to their fur just like it clings to your clothes.
Head to the drug store
Over the counter decongestants will help relieve stuffy noses while antihistamines can help relieve sniffles and itching. Be sure to read all labels for interactions with medications you already take and check with your provider before starting a new medication. If your current medications aren’t helping, consult your provider. They could suggest a different medication or ensure you are using your current medications correctly. Your provider may also be able to prescribe medications that are longer acting and non-sedative. If your allergies are life threatening and severe your provider may suggest immunotherapy shots for long term relief.
If you have allergies or questions about allergies give us a call at (662) 348-3342 . We will be happy to schedule an appointment for you.