How to Beat Spring Allergies


Stella Gandhi, MD

For many, the promise of warmer spring weather, blooming flowers, and chirping birds is offset by the return of allergy season. Fortunately we’ve got some tips to help you overcome those spring allergies and enjoy this wonderful time of year!

Spring has arrived, bringing with it blooming flowers, chirping birds, and a wave of seasonal allergies. These allergies, caused by pollen from trees, grasses, and weeds, can cause a range of symptoms including sneezing, runny nose, itchy eyes, and congestion. As a primary care provider, I often see patients struggling with seasonal allergies. Here are some tips I frequently recommend to help manage symptoms!

Avoid Triggers

The best way to manage seasonal allergies is to avoid the triggers that cause them. Keep windows closed during high pollen counts, and stay indoors during peak allergy season, typically in the early morning and evening. When you do go outside, wear a hat and sunglasses to protect your face and eyes from pollen. Change clothes and shower after coming inside to remove any pollen that may have attached to your skin and hair.

Over-the-Counter Allergy Medications

Over-the-counter (OTC) medications can be effective in managing allergy symptoms. Antihistamines, such as loratadine and cetirizine, can relieve sneezing, itching, and runny nose. Decongestants, like pseudoephedrine and phenylephrine, can relieve nasal congestion. Nasal corticosteroids, such as fluticasone and budesonide, can reduce inflammation in the nasal passages. It is important to discuss any medication use with your primary care doctor, especially if you have any medical conditions or take prescription medications.

Allergy Shots

Allergy shots, also known as immunotherapy, can provide long-term relief from seasonal allergies. They work by gradually introducing the patient to increasing doses of the allergen, allowing the immune system to become desensitized to it. Allergy shots are typically administered once a week for several months, and then the frequency decreases over time. They can take several months to be effective, so it is important to start treatment before allergy season begins.

Home Remedies

There are several home remedies that can help alleviate allergy symptoms. Saline nasal irrigation, using a neti pot or nasal spray, can help clear nasal passages of pollen and other irritants. Honey, preferably local, may help alleviate symptoms due to its natural antihistamine properties. Keeping the air inside your home clean and free of dust and other allergens can also help.

In conclusion, seasonal allergies can be a frustrating and uncomfortable experience, but there are several ways to manage symptoms. By avoiding triggers, using OTC medications, considering allergy shots, and using home remedies, you can alleviate your symptoms and enjoy the spring weather. It is always important to consult with your Radish doctor to discuss the best options for your individual needs. So get out there and enjoy nature!

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