Pollen season came early this year and it is already in full force. This may come as no surprise to anyone who suffers from spring seasonal allergies. Spring allergies, sometimes known as hay fever, occur as a reaction from the immune system to certain outdoor allergens. The most common of these allergens being pollen. And while pollen can’t be avoided entirely thanks to all the blooming trees and flowers that come with the spring season, there are things that people can do to manage your allergies and minimize your symptoms. Allow the healthcare providers here at Family Practice Center to explain what can be done.
The first step in feeling better this spring is understanding the things that trigger allergy symptoms and avoid them as much as possible. No two people are exactly alike and different people may react differently to certain allergens. For instance, if you are especially susceptible to tree pollen, it can be helpful to check the pollen count to understand which days will be especially bad for your symptoms. Wearing a mask while outside and making sure to keep doors and windows closed can also help.
Regardless of your personal allergy triggers or how you are specifically affected, we recommend the following tips for anyone who experiences especially bad spring allergies:
- Prioritize clean indoor air by regularly changing out HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) air conditioning air filters and investing in air purifiers and a dehumidifier if need be.
- Nasal irrigation, or rinsing your nasal passages, can be a simple and effective way to significantly lessen nasal congestion. Using a saline solution, this can directly cleanse allergens and mucus from the nose, leading to easier breathing.
- Be proactive when it comes to taking allergy medications. Take them at least one month ahead of time before the allergens are in full force or even year-round if appropriate and recommended by your healthcare provider so they will be fully effective by the time spring rolls around. Speak with your doctor about more powerful allergy prevention alternatives like allergy shots if over-the-counter alternatives are not helpful.
- Avoid things that can worsen allergy symptoms like smoking, drinking alcohol (especially red wine), or perfumes/colognes with added irritants.
- If you have pets, ensure that they are not bringing in the pollen on their fur from outdoors.
- If you are outdoors for an extended period of time and have severe allergy symptoms, it may be best to change your clothing and even rinse your hair if you don’t wash it everyday.
With effective medications and treatment options available, there’s no reason to let seasonal allergies get in the way of your fun this spring. For more information on spring allergies or to schedule an appointment at one of our four metro Atlanta area locations, please contact Family Practice Center today. Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook and Instagram for additional health tips, news, and so much more.