When the seasons start to change – particularly from winter to spring – do you notice that you’re easily congested, with itchy, watery eyes? If this sounds familiar, you may be one of the millions of Americans affected by seasonal allergies. Keep reading to find out how you can lessen your symptoms and be allergy-free.
When the seasons start to change – particularly from winter to spring, do you notice that you’re easily congested, with itchy, watery eyes? Or when those March winds start to blow, do you find yourself with a case of the sniffles?
If this sounds familiar, it’s likely you’re suffering from seasonal allergies – and you’re not alone!
The transition from winter to spring, spring to summer and fall to winter are filled with pollen and other triggers that spell misery in seventy-five percent of the over 50 million Americans that are estimated to be allergic.
And while the changing of the seasons is normally a time to celebrate, if you’re affected by seasonal allergies, it’s a time to dread.
So, can anything be done? Well, take a look below to find out more about seasonal allergies and helpful tips to lessen your symptoms.
What causes seasonal allergies?
Seasonal allergies are the result of a reaction by the immune system to an allergen, or foreign substance, that has been breathed into the body. Grass, weeds and molds are the most common culprits, but certain types of trees, plants and insects can also trigger allergic reactions.
What are the symptoms?
The symptoms of seasonal allergies include sinus pressure, a stuffy nose, runny nose, sneezing, headaches, nausea, itchy and watery eyes, throat irritation, and rashes or other skin irritations.
Many seasonal allergy sufferers do not know the exact cause of their symptoms, and simply take over-the-counter medications such as Zyrtec and Allegra. However, a trip to an allergist or immunologist can pinpoint the exact allergic trigger and result in a better understanding of how to best treat allergic reactions and avoid problematic allergens in the first place.
Prevention and Treatment Tips and Tricks
Air filters (separate machines or screens installed over air conditioning units) can trap some of the allergens that find their way indoors, but alternative therapies and treatments can also help. According to the European Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, acupuncture performed in addition to the taking of Chinese herbal medicines was shown to improve allergy symptoms prevalent in the nose and eyes, and increased energy levels depleted as a result of allergic reactions.
Butterbur, a shrub that has been used to treat headaches, has anti-inflammatory properties that decrease histamine and other chemicals released by the immune system when an allergic reaction takes place. Also known as Exwort and bog rhubarb, butterbur is available in teas, extracts and pills.
Another homeopathic remedy to consider is grapeseed extract, a natural antioxidant with additional antihistamine effects that can be consumed in liquid or capsule form.
Whatever your seasonal allergy symptoms, you don’t have to simply tolerate them. Get to the root of your allergies and try a variety of treatments to find the options that suit your system!