Ah, spring! The birds are singing, the trees are blooming, the breeze is blowing, the windows are open, and... AAAAHHHHHCHOOOO! Nothing ruins the excitement of springtime faster than an allergy attack.
Allergies are caused when your immune system mistakes a normally harmless substance (such as pollen, animal dander, dust mites, mold, etc.) as a dangerous invader. The immune system reacts by producing chemicals, such as histamine that create allergy symptoms, like sneezing, itchy watery eyes, and congestion.
How to best survive allergy season? We have some tips and tricks to get you through.
Top 4 Tips For Surviving Allergy Season
Keep it clean.
Keep up on dusting and vacuuming around the home, but wear a mask if you're extra sensitive to limit exposure. Wash bedding weekly in hot water. Pollen can accumulate in your hair and clothes, so changing when you come inside can be helpful as can a quick shower before bedtime. Removing your shoes right away when you get home helps reduce tracking in unwanted allergens as well.
Take it indoors.
Check your weather app for pollen counts before heading outside for your workout. If they are high, train indoors with an exercise video or at the gym instead. Pollen tends to be at its height in the mid- to late-afternoon hours, so save your outdoor activities for first thing in the morning to reduce your exposure.
Boost your vitamin C intake.
Vitamin C is a natural antihistamine - it destroys the molecular structure of histamine, the chemical the immune system releases that causes all of those pesky allergy symptoms.
Drink peppermint tea.
Not only does it smell delicious, but the essential oil of peppermint helps as a decongestant and calms irritated mucous membranes. It also contains anti-inflammatory and mild antibacterial constituents, which can also be helpful. Here are some more warming drink recipes that will help comfort you!
Using these natural preventative measures can help you live more comfortably this spring!
In severe cases it is best to consult your doctor for further treatment for allergies. Realize your sneezing is not because of allergies, but it's actually a cold? We can help you with that too!
[Credit: "10 Home Remedies for Allergies."How Stuff Works: Health.]
[Credit: "Allergies: Causes." Mayo Clinic.]
[Credit: Levine, Beth."8 Tips for Surviving a Horrible Allergy Season." Everyday Health.]