Seasonal allergies, also referred to as allergic rhinitis or hay fever, are a common ailment experienced by around 60 million Americans each year. They’re caused by allergens that lead the immune system to overreact, triggering an allergic response. One of the most common triggers of seasonal allergies is pollen, which is especially abundant in areas with wind-pollinated plants like grass, trees, and weeds.
Allergic reactions can manifest via sneezing, irritated eyes, stuffy nose, or scratchy or itchy sinuses/ear canal/throat. In less common but more severe instances, symptoms may also include coughing, wheezing, difficulty breathing, and headaches. It’s common for those with seasonal allergies to also have asthma; in this case, an allergic reaction can trigger an asthma attack.
If you or anyone in your household suffer from seasonal allergies, the good news is that there are many ways to manage or mitigate the effects. With a few tweaks to your daily life, you can significantly reduce allergy attacks and live comfortably through the season.
Here are five easy yet highly effective ways to ease your seasonal allergies and feel better sooner rather than later.
5 Tips for Managing Seasonal Allergies
1. Reduce Exposure to Allergens
As the popular adage goes, prevention is better than cure. To manage your seasonal allergies, try to minimize your exposure to the particles you’re allergic to. It’s best to remain indoors during dry and windy days as pollen and other irritants may be floating in the air. If you have to go outside, wear a mask to protect your nose and mouth.
It’s recommended to wear surgical masks or those marked N95, as these filter 95% of particles and are made according to the standards of the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health.
If possible, ask someone else to do outdoor chores (like mowing or gardening) that may involve allergens. You can also wear sunglasses or eyeglasses when going outside to minimize your exposure to irritants.
2. Rinse Your Sinuses
Nasal irrigation using a saline solution (salt and water mixture) is a fast, effective, and inexpensive way to reduce nasal congestion. Rinsing your sinuses can help flush out mucus and pesky allergens that are irritating your nose.
There are many methods to irrigate the nasal pathways such as using a squeeze bottle or a neti pot. Even kids can do it! Alternatively, gargling a saline solution can also soothe the throat if your allergic reaction includes a scratchy or sore throat.
3. Keep Outdoor Allergens Out
Reduce the risk of tracking outdoor irritants by removing your shoes outside your door. Change out of your outdoor clothes and stow them away in a closed hamper. Make sure to take a shower, especially before heading to bed, to wash off any pollen or particles that may be on your skin or in your hair.
If you have pets that like to go outside, wipe them down before they enter your house as they may also have irritants clinging to them that can end up on your floors and furniture. Ideally, keep your doors and windows closed to keep pollen and dust out, especially if you live somewhere with a lot of wind.
4. Monitor Pollen Counts
Your local news stations, websites, or local radio stations may include pollen forecasts in their weather reports. Alternatively, you can check the National Allergy Bureau for pollen count reports.
When the pollen count is high, it’s advisable to avoid or minimize outdoor activities, especially in the mid to late afternoon when pollen levels are typically high. So, if you intend to go outside, best to do it first thing in the morning or later in the day when pollen counts are usually lower.
5. Improve Indoor Air Quality
Air purification is a simple but powerful way to stay protected from allergens inside your home or office. Use an air purifier with high-efficiency particulate air filters (HEPA filters) as these are effective in trapping small particles that can irritate the nasal pathways and trigger allergic reactions.
Sans is a medical-grade air purifier, designed with three-stage filtration for optimal air cleaning. It’s built with a HEPA 13 filter, the highest level of efficiency for HEPA filters. It can remove at least 99.97% of particles that are 0.3 microns in diameter, and 99.95% of particles that 0.1 microns in diameter. This filter is tasked with catching physical pollutants such as pollen, dander, and dust, as well as viruses and bacteria.
The HEPA 13 filter is protected by a pre-filter that traps larger physical pollutants like hair and dust, helping to extend the HEPA 13 filter’s lifespan. But Sans also takes care of foul odors with its activated carbon filter. This filter neutralizes harmful gases and chemicals so that you only breathe clean and fresh air.
To top it off, the filters are sterilized by an interior UV-C light that neutralizes pathogens and microorganisms so that they won’t grow on the filters and end up back in the air you breathe.
Seasonal allergies can range from annoying to nearly debilitating, but relief is around the corner. Avoid exposing yourself to allergens in the first place, try cleaning out your sinuses, keep an eye on pollen counts, do your best to shut allergens out of the home, and invest in a high-quality air purifier. You might find yourself feeling better instantly.To protect yourself and your family from irritants that cause seasonal allergies, check out Sans’ air purifier today and feel the difference.