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Health

Spring is in the air – and so are seasonal allergies
8 seasonal allergy survival tips
 
Published Wednesday, April 30, 2014
by By Michael Kaplan MD

While spring is an exciting time to get out and enjoy the sunshine, the fun is often hindered by the symptoms of airborne allergies that many of us know all too well: sneezing, runny or clogged nose, coughing, postnasal drip, watering eyes and itchy throats.

Allergy symptoms can vary widely, and can even include severe rashes, swelling, shock, and shortness of breath in those with asthma. These symptoms typically worsen on warm, sunny, dry and windy days, when pollen levels are typically higher.

If you deal with seasonal allergies, consider the following tips to help prevent or treat your suffering:

 

  •      Consider staying indoors with the windows closed in the morning, when outdoor pollen levels are highest.
  •        Remove clothes you've worn outside as soon as you are indoors. Taking a shower to rinse pollen from your skin and hair is also recommended after outdoor activity.
  •        When working or exercising outside, wear a facemask designed to filter out pollen in the air and keep it from reaching nasal passages.
  •        Bathe and brush pets weekly or as often as possible.
  •      Use a vacuum cleaner daily, and a portable high-efficiency particulate air, or HEPA filter in your bedroom.
  •        Rinsing your nasal passages with distilled, sterile saline solution is a quick, inexpensive and effective way to relieve nasal congestion.
  •        When symptoms cannot be minimized or avoided, they can often be controlled by medicines. See your allergist, primary care physician or go to an urgent care to find out which medication will work best for you, including oral antihistamine, decongestant, and nasal spray.
  •       Check pollen levels daily in your area by visiting www.aaaai.org and plan your outdoor activities accordingly.

 

Dr. Michael Kaplan is the National Medical Director for NextCare Urgent Care.

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