1. Know Your Allergen
Identifying the allergen causing your symptoms signifies the first step toward eliminating overexposure. Airborne allergens can be especially difficult to pinpoint, as the tiny particles floating through the air can go almost unseen and undetected. Different types of airborne allergens include:
- Pet Dander
- Dust Mites
Health experts estimate that 35 million Americans suffer from upper respiratory tract symptoms that are allergic reactions to airborne allergens. Understanding these types of allergens and where they are most prevalent will help reduce exposure and lessen the likelihood of a reaction. Talk to your doctor to determine your specific allergies, and research them to know where and how to avoid them.
2. Watch the Weather
Hot, dry windy days can exacerbate allergy symptoms, as pollen is more likely to be widely circulated throughout the air. Rainy days can wash away pollen for a short period of time, but post-rain environments can be even more difficult for allergy sufferers. Many weather channels will offer pollen counts, which will indicate how dense the pollen particulate sifting through the air may be each day.
However, allergy sufferers must keep in mind that pollen is not the only culprit for spring, fall or perennial allergies. Different allergens, such as ragweed and mold, can set off allergic reactions. Many of these are also highly dependent on the weather conditions and season in your region.
For example, outdoor molds and tree pollens both begin to flourish in the spring; however, their kickoff and intensity depend on the warm or cold climate. Mold spores and their varied peak levels can range based on the climate area—July for warmer climates and October for cooler regions. In other areas, a late winter freeze can mean late blooming for trees, grasses and plants, ultimately resulting in a fairly mild allergy season.
3. Limit Outdoor Activities
During the fall and spring, it may be necessary to curtail the amount of time spent outdoors. While this may seem contradictory to the beautiful weather beckoning you outside, overexposure to outdoor allergens may cause negative repercussions. Someone with severe allergies is susceptible to extreme bouts of sickness and fatigue due to overexposure.
Pollen counts soar on warm, dry and windy days and circulation tends to be higher in the morning hours. According to Pollen.com, pollen counts are the highest between 5 a.m. and 10 a.m. Try to save those outdoor adventures for the afternoon or for cooler, less windy weather.
4. Do Some Spring Cleaning
Cleaning regularly may seem tedious, but it can be enormously beneficial in the long run. Taking the time to clean out humid, damp, or wet areas in the house where molds spores may grow eliminates the possibility for mold exposure. Reducing pet dander and dust mites through routine vacuuming, carpet cleaning and HEPA air filters keeps sneezing and sniffles at bay. If mold is spotted, use a bleach solution, or soap and water, to clean the area.
Cockroaches are another common trigger for indoor allergens. Experts also suggest blocking off cracks and crevices in walls or door frames, putting away pet dishes, frequently removing garbage, tightly sealing foods, and fixing leaky faucets or pipes to reduce the likelihood of cockroaches.
A few other tips for reducing indoor allergens include:
· Wash bedding regularly
· Use allergen-proof casings for bedding, pillows, etc.
· Vacuum frequently, using a HEPA filter on the vacuum bag
· Keep windows in the home tightly closed
· Take shoes off at the door, and ask guests to do the same
· Set air conditioners to re-circulate and use HEPA filters in your vents
5. Stay Ahead
Don’t wait for your allergy symptoms to get you down for multiple weeks at a time. Take a long-lasting, fast-acting allergy medicine that relieves your symptoms. From a scratchy throat to watery eyes, you need a medicine that is powerful enough to give you relief quickly. Be consistent with your allergy medications for optimal results and make sure that you are taking a medicine that is right for your body. DayClear is a safe, effective solution that allergy sufferers can rely on daily.
National Institute of Health, Airborne Allergies, niaid.nih.gove, April 2003 US Department of Health and Human Services