Spring is in the air, flowers are blooming, your eyes are itchy and you can’t stop sneezing. Say hello to allergy season! The American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology (ACAAI) estimates that more than 50 million Americans suffer from allergies each year. So, you’re not alone when the spring season’s pollen, fresh grass, weeds and mold spores bring on hay fever which keeps you inside looking at the beautiful weather out the window.
Antihistamine medications and decongestants are available over the counter and you can also go to the doctor and get allergy shots to help combat the symptoms and build up your immunity. It may take a few days for the medication to get in your system before you see relief. While you wait for that you can take action to keep your home from causing symptoms.
Close the Windows – Open windows allow pollen and other allergens to flow into the house and stick on your furniture, walls and floor. Use your air conditioning when in the car or at home. If you have forced AC or heat make sure you are using high-efficiency filters.
Vacuum Using a HEPA Filter – It’s inevitable that you will track some allergens in when you come inside. You don’t want the vacuum cleaner kicking up all the dust into t he air. A good filter ill help keep the air clean.
Change Clothes and Rinse off – You don’t want to sit on the furniture or lay in bed with allergens on you. Make sure upon entering the house you rinse off and leave clothes and shoes in the laundry room so you aren’t spreading the pollen around the house.
Watch Pollen Counts – Your daily news and the weather channel are great resources to c heck when pollen counts are high. On elevated days it’s best to limit time outside.
Rinse Out Your Sinuses – After being outside it’s important to make sure you’re not carrying allergens with you. Sinus rinses come in squeeze bottles and pots and hel p run distilled, sanitized saline solutions through your sinus cavity to clean out irritants.
Test out these techniques and see how your allergy symptoms react. Making lifestyle changes during allergy season may be a way to stay out of the doctor’s office with sinu s infections or asthma flare ups.