Pollen Coping Skills

Almost everyone coming into my office these days is suffering from allergy symptoms (myself included!). It’s wonderful to see nature spring to life, but so many things blooming at once can cause suffering.

Even if you don’t have a true “allergy,” pollen can be irritating. It’s shaped like microscopic spurs. This helps it catch a ride to its target, by hooking onto insects and animal fur, etc. When it hooks into our eyes and nostrils and mucous membranes, the irritation causes our bodies to try to expel it through sneezing and tears and coughing.

Here are some tips to minimize discomfort:

  1. Monitor pollen levels. Most weather services give pollen updates daily. It’s best to avoid outdoor activities when the pollen level is high.
  2. Control your indoor environment. Keep the windows closed and run the air conditioner. In your car, recirculated air will have the least pollen in it.
  3. Stay clean. Change your clothes and shoes if you’ve been outside. Shower and wash your hair before going to bed. This helps keep pollen off of pillows, sheets, and furnishings.
  4. Wipe off your pets. If your pets go outside, wipe them off with a microfiber cloth as they come in. If you’re really sensitive to pollen, you might need to keep pets out of your bedroom.
  5. Rinse your sinuses. Use a Neti pot or commercial squeeze bottle to flush saline solution through your sinus passages. You can buy kits at the supermarket that include saline packets, or you can make your own solution with distilled water, salt, and baking soda. 
  6. Baby your eyes. If your eyes feel irritated, you can use an over-the-counter moisturizing or antihistamine drops. Be sure to clean your contacts if you wear them. My eye doctor told me to gently wash my (closed) eyelids and lashes with a washcloth, warm water, and a tiny droplet of baby shampoo. It really helps prevent problems for me!
  7. Consider a nasal spray. Over-the-counter corticosteroid nasal sprays (my doctor recommended Flonase) work well without making us sleepy. You could also try a more natural spray like Xlear (I use that one, too!). 
  8. Consider oral antihistamines. Ask your medical care provider if taking medicine would help you with your symptoms, or if there’s a homeopathic remedy that can provide relief. “First-generation” antihistamines like Benadryl work fast, but they don’t last long and they can make us really sleepy. “Second-generation” antihistamines like Claritin, Allegra and Zyrtec last longer and tend to be less sedating for most people. Second-generation antihistamines and homeopathic remedies usually need to be taken daily/regularly, starting a week or so before you really need relief.
  9. See a doctor. If you’ve tried at-home remedies and you’re still really suffering, or if your symptoms progress to sinusitis, asthma or other ailments, you might want to seek medical help. Try to find a board certified allergist.

DISCLAIMER: This article is for information/entertainment only and is not meant to serve as medical advice. Please work with your trusted medical care provider to create a detailed treatment plan that’s right for you.

Source: http://www.futureofpersonalhealth.com/prevention-and-treatment/a-10-step-guide-to-overcoming-your-pollen-allergies?utm_source=propeller

Category : Blog &Health Posted on April 16, 2019

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