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10 Easy Tips for Allergy Relief, Part 1

Apr 07, 2022

It’s that time of year again. Nature is bursting forth with beauty, blossoms….and pollen. For those who suffer from seasonal allergies, the blooming season is met with mixed emotions. 

Allergies are caused by your body targeting a substance (ie pollen, dust and animal dander) as a problem, and initiating a histamine response in an attempt to protect your body from the "invader." This creates inflammation, which leads to the annoying and irritating allergy symptoms: runny nose, sneezing, itchy eyes etc. 

The good news is that there are many simple things you can do to support your body to be less reactive, which means fewer, and less intense, symptoms. Strategies for calming this reaction fall into three categories: cut down in incoming irritants, decrease inflammation in the body overall, and symptom relieving strategies.

Here are the first 5!

    1. Wear a mask when outdoors. How convenient that we are now very acclimated to wearing masks. Even as the mask mandates fall by the wayside, if you have hay fever you will benefit greatly from continuing to wear a mask when out of doors during your allergy season(s). You can use the handy pollen count on your favorite weather app to make decisions about when to go mask free out of doors. 
    2. Don’t touch your face. Again, a habit that has been more front and center the past couple of years, but it’s always a good idea to refrain from touching your face. Rubbing your eyes or nose (which, when itchy, you want to do!) is an effective way to transfer pollen, viruses and other irritants to your body. Extra tip: use a clean Kleenex or cloth to rub your eyes if hand washing beforehand is not convenient. If you live with pets and are sensitive to pet dander, definitely always wash your hands after petting the cat or dog.
    3. Use HEPA filters. HEPA (which stands for High Efficiency Particulate Air) filters are one of your best strategies for cutting down on incoming allergens.. By keeping your windows closed (I know, a drag, but if you suffer from allergies, this is a key strategy) and running HEPA filters, you can have a significant positive impact on your allergy symptoms. We discovered our beloved Coway AP-1512HH Mighty model during the fires of 2018 and eventually put this HEPA filter in every room. We are not affiliated with this company, and there are other good brands out there, but I mention this for those who (like me!) prefer someone else to do the vetting. 
    4. Use a Neti pot twice a day. The ancient practice of rinsing nasal passages with a gentle saline solution works wonders to cut down allergy symptoms by literally washing away pollen before the body can react to it. Here’s  instructions on how to use a Neti pot or you can watch this  short instructional video from Baraka, our ceramic neti pot supplier.,
    5. Keep well-hydrated. Tip #5 moves us into the realm of how to decrease inflammation in your body overall. Inflammation is a bit like fire. If your system is already “aflame”, it’s easy to fan the flames into more symptoms. Anything you can do to decrease inflammation will help decrease discomfort. Staying well hydrated is an important way to decrease inflammation. "How much water should I drink?" I like this formula: take your body weight in pounds, divide it in half = the number of ounces you should drink a day. Example: 150/2 = 75 ounces a day. 

 

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