Treating Seasonal Allergies

April 5, 2022

Allergies are a major problem for many once the winter ends. It’s the perfect time to be outside, yet the pollen levels are higher than in months. Allergies are a part of everyday life, but they can cause crippling symptoms that are difficult to treat. There are a few ways to manage allergies and reduce symptoms.

AFC Urgent Care Boulder provides treatment for allergies on a daily basis. Don’t suffer in silence with pollen and pet dander. Get your symptoms tested and treated in our walk-in clinic today.

Decongestants

Decongestants work to relieve the stuffiness in the nose and sinus caused by allergies. They’re usually in pill or liquid form and are often also used for relief from colds. Decongestants should be used short-term as they may cause unwanted side effects.

Nasal Sprays

There are decongestant nasal sprays that clear the nose and sinus for a period of time. These usually last for hours, but then the symptoms will return afterward. These nasal sprays should only be used once or twice a day, depending on the instructions, but are not meant for the long term.

Nasal steroid sprays are similar but can be used for more extended periods. These sprays help relieve all the symptoms caused by allergies and can be used with antihistamines. Nasal steroid sprays may take consistent use to begin working effectively, so starting before allergy season or a trip may be beneficial.

Antihistamines

Antihistamines help the body to react less severely to allergies. They help block histamine, a chemical the body releases when it senses danger, like from contact with allergens causing the symptoms associated with allergy trouble such as watery eyes or a stuffy nose.

Antihistamines usually last 12-24 hours, depending on the dose and brand. There are also antihistamine eye drops to help with severely itchy eyes due to allergies. Since there are many options and brands of antihistamines, it is recommended to speak to a doctor before choosing.

Prescriptions

There are also more intense allergy medication options available with a prescription. This will require a doctor's visit and a prescription for a certain type of allergy medicine. These medicines can help if allergy symptoms persist after over-the-counter options don’t provide relief.

When to Take?

Allergy medications such as antihistamines can be taken before an allergy season to help the body ease contact with allergens once allergy season begins. Most oral allergy medications begin working within half an hour and should be taken before coming in contact with the allergens. These medications are simple to add to a morning routine or before bed, and some, like Benadryl, can even cause drowsiness.

Preventing Allergies

Pollen is the primary cause of seasonal allergies. The weather channel or pollen.com provides pollen predictions and counts to help plan for high levels that will cause an allergic reaction. Visiting another area can also introduce allergens that cause an unexpected response, and planning for pollen levels can help prevent a miserable trip.

Home Defense

Allergens in the home can also cause a reaction. There are plenty of steps to take to reduce these allergens so that the home becomes a more comfortable place for those with allergies. The air in the house can change based on the season causing it to become more moist or dry. Moist air can lead to mold, and dry air can lead to irritated sinuses. Using a humidifier or dehumidifier can help control the moisture levels within the house. Maintaining a reasonable moisture level will help soothe nasal passages and throats.

Filter and Purify

Using a proper filter for the air conditioner can help reduce the allergens in the home. HEA filters help catch the allergens coming through the air conditioner to prevent them from being blown throughout the house. An air purifier can also be purchased and used inside the house to help reduce irritants in the air.

Other Options for reducing allergens include:

  • Keeping windows closed
  • Vacuuming
  • Washing hair and clothes after being outside
  • Washing the bed sheets and blankets more frequently

Allergy Shots

Another option for dealing with serious allergy troubles is getting an allergy shot. A doctor will provide this after they have assessed your symptoms. The doctor will likely perform an allergy test to confirm what a patient is allergic to and then prescribe an allergy shot based on the results. The allergy shot will help suppress the body's reaction to environmental allergens, thus reducing the symptoms of seasonal allergies.

Allergy shots are given over a period of time and can help nearly eliminate symptoms for up to 5-10 years at a time. Shots will usually be given weekly and eventually monthly until they are fully effective. Many insurances will cover some of the cost of allergy shots, but without insurance, they can be up to $4000.

Get Relief

Allergies are a serious condition because of the symptoms. They prevent people from visiting people and places they love or participating in activities they enjoy. There are many options for dealing with allergies and various generic brands of most medicines. If you are suffering from allergies, speak to a doctor for help getting the proper relief from your symptoms.

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