Control Your Allergies

While springtime may mean warmer weather and flowers in bloom, for at least one out of every five Americans, it also means itchy eyes, sneezing, nasal congestion and wheezing.

With so many of us susceptible to allergies – especially this time of year when grass, weed and pollen are in the air, it’s important to take the necessary steps to get through the day.

Hay fever is the most popular diagnosis, and it is a result of a seasonal allergy to pollen. Luckily there are plenty of treatments to help reduce the effect, from over-the-counter products to prescriptions or allergy shots. Beyond that, there are a number of actions allergy sufferers can take to treat their allergies.

Here are a few tips to help prevent allergies from acting up:

·Close your windows at home during windy days.
·Be sure to keep your air conditioner filter clean.
·Recirculate air when at home or in your car so you’re not bringing in outside air filled with pollen.
·Keep clean. That means regularly washing sheets and blankets, as well as showering after you’ve been outside for an extended period of time.
·Keep your pet clean, too. After all, they like to be outside and roll around where pollen is, which they then bring indoors to you.
·Store unused items, such as winter clothing, in plastic storage bags to avoid dust collection.
·Speaking of dust, be sure to dust and vacuum regularly.
·Avoid outdoor activities on high pollen days. Check with your local news source for a daily pollen count and air quality index.

If your allergies persist or if you have concerns about your health, consult with your physician or an allergist. Together, you can work through your symptoms to arrive at a treatment that works best for your situation and lifestyle.