The flowers are blooming, the sun is shining and the grass is green but you can’t see any of it because you have your face buried in a handful of tissues. Ah, allergies. They transform tranquility into a-choos and beautiful afternoons into a war with the outdoors. You’ve tried holding your breath, getting rid of your cat and buying everything in the medicine aisle but nothing seems to really work. Try these allergy tricks and finally enjoy the season.
Bedding can collect enough allergens to make the next day a nightmare. Clean your bedding every week and invest in a pillow that will block the bad stuff. High-quality down pillows are woven and lab tested to provide a barrier from dust mites and other allergens. Use a better pillow and you’ll feel better.
Honey contains a tiny bit of pollen from the plants that bees buzz around on. Eat a bit of it each day and you’ll give your body the opportunity to build up immunity to it. Try having a tablespoon of honey daily a month or so before the season starts. It’s particularly delicious in hot lemon water and tea. Prevention is yummy.
If you’re a gel or mousse user, pollen may get trapped in your hair and irritate you while you sleep. Wash out the pollen before you get your zzz’s. While you’re at it, wash clothing exposed to the outdoors right away too.
75% to 90% of all doctor’s visits are for stress-related ailments. Stress also raises cortisol levels (a hormone that increases blood sugar and decreases the immune system) which can rev-up your allergic response. Relax, and you’ll feel much better. It’s a pretty good reason to crack open a book and cozy up.
Exhaust fans in bathrooms and laundry rooms can reduce the growth of indoor mold that causes allergies and give you some allergy relief. You may also want to use a dehumidifier in your basement for extra caution. Over-exposure to mold can cause some serious health risks including asthma, infection and severe allergic reactions.
Eating fruits and veggies high in vitamin C has been shown to lower levels of histamine that can help prevent the symptoms of allergies. Try eating more broccoli, bell peppers and kiwi. Sure you can take a supplement, but food rich in this vitamin are much more effective.
Eating a diet high in antioxidants and immune boosting supplements can effectively aid in the prevention of allergy symptoms. Make sure you include fish oil, garlic, Echinacea, and tea, in your diet as frequently as possible.
You’ll look like a cactus but you’ll feel like a million bucks. This pokey practice is an ancient form of Chinese healing that pre-dates recorded history. Acupuncture has been used to relieve pain, treat infertility, prevent disease, and promote general health.
Maybe some mall-walking is in order. The longer you’re outside during allergy season—the more you’ll suffer. Don’t give up the never-ending health benefits of fitness—bust out those workout videos, slide over the coffee table and get moving.
Although it’s much more fun to let your hair tousle in the wind, it can really aggravate your symptoms. It’s not just flowers and roadside plant life you should be afraid of. Carbon monoxide and nitrogen dioxide are incredibly dangerous vehicle pollutants that can cause asthma, hay fever and eczema. Close your car window and keep out the irritants. Hey, look on the bright side, you can sing a whole lot louder if your windows are up.
Ok, so it looks a little weird, but this teapot lookin’ thing will wash away any pollen that’s stuck in your nasal cavity. Used for many centuries in ancient India, this nasal irrigation technique is great for short-term seasonal use. Mix up the saline solution and pour allergies away.
There are many simple over-the-counter drugs available that can help counteract symptoms of seasonal allergies as well as many herbal treatments for allergies. Look for specific ones that fight the exact symptom that’s giving you a hard time. If you’re concerned about whether or not you should take an over-the-counter medication or are worried it may interact with others you’re already taking, consult with your doctor before buying it at the drug store.