The Back Story
It’s spring which means pollen is out and everyone is searching for some allergy relief, including my class of 1st graders! When I was growing up I had average allergies, ya know the kind where you can pop a Zyrtec and be cool. Well, two years ago at the end of winter I got this awful cough. I thought I had a cold, and was taking every type of cough medicine on the shelf.
After about 2 months of a gross cough, I decided I needed to see a doctor. She quickly said, “oh, you have allergies.” I thought she was wrong, but she prescribed me a singular and an inhaler and I was suddenly good again. When school let out, and I needed a new prescription, I decided to see and Ear, Nose and Throat Doctor. He confirmed the fact that I had allergies, but he took it a step further and tested me for a wide variety of things like trees, animals, grasses, molds, etc. Basically, I’m allergic to everything, my arm was red bumpy mess. At the same time I also developed an allergy to almonds, and pecans, but that’s another story.
So, that was two years ago. I took a singular, an extra strength antihistamine, and my inhaler everyday. Everything was fine and dandy until about a month ago when my prescription expired, forcing to find a new doctor here in DC to prescribe me the medicine (which I have not had the time to do yet). So without my normal medicine, let’s just say that allergies have been hitting me hard lately. Here is what I’m doing to try to fight the pollen, but if you feel like you also have experienced some extreme symptoms find a doctor ASAP!
5 Tips to Fight Allergy Season
Take an Antihistamine-Pretty straightforward here. Antihistamines are a type of medicine to help block allergy symptoms. Some popular ones are Zyrtec, Allegra, and Claritin.
Wash Your Sheets-This is something my doctor stressed to me. I don’t know about you, but washing sheets can feel like a hassle, but I take it very seriously during allergy season. We are constantly tracking in pollen and allergens on our clothes, shoes, and hair. So leave your shoes away from where you sleep and wash your sheets weekly…maybe even change your pillow case every few days.
Dust Frequently– The house I live in now has hardwood floors and it seems like dust visibly accumulates so quickly. With my Swiffer to the rescue, I mop up a decent amount of dust each week. If you have carpet, make sure to vacuum frequently.
Use a NetiPot- You might be grossed out by this, but I promise you it is a game changer. After the antihistamine it is the most important piece of my routine. If you are unfamiliar with a Neti-Pot, it is a pot or a bottle that you fill up with pre-boiled, or distilled water and mix in a sinus saline solution. Then you squirt the water solution into one nostril…and it comes out the other nostril. It feels a little weird, but it will relieve your congestion and allow you to actually breathe through your nose. Also, there are many versions of the official Neti-Pot. I actually use the Neil Med Sinus Rinse, as I think it is easier to do correctly without a mess.
Eat/Drink Natural Honey- Eating local honey gives you a small dose of the pollen that is similar to the pollen you’re exposed to every time you walk outside. Therefore, it can slowly help decrease your sensitivity to the local allergens. Check out your local farmers market, or Whole Foods.
Let me know below what tips you have to fight allergy season!