Celebrate Spring! The days are getting longer, birds are singing, flowers and plants bursting in bloom. This season of renewal can be a season of suffering for those with seasonal allergies.
Do you suffer from allergies? If so, you are not alone. Approximately 50 million people in the United States (one in five) suffer from allergies. (1) There are many different types of allergy triggers including: food, pollen, pet dander, mold, dust mites, latex, and cockroaches.
Allergy symptoms occur when your immune system overreacts to something that is normally harmless and releases a chemical called histamine to counteract the invader. Histamine can cause a variety of symptoms including rash, headache, sneezing, runny nose and swelling. In the case of food allergies nausea, vomiting and diarrhea may occur. Generally speaking, if the allergy is something you breathe in, your reaction will probably affect your eyes, nose, and lungs. (2)
Dilution is your body’s first defense against invaders, so the runny nose, sneezing, and watery eyes are your body’s way of cleansing and ridding itself of the invader.
How to tell the difference between a cold and allergies? (3)
- Have the seasons changed? Seasonal allergies will come on at the same time of the year, every year. Colds can turn up at any time but are most common in winter.
- Do you have a fever? Allergy symptoms are never accompanied by a fever.
- Did the symptoms come on suddenly? Allergy symptoms tend to come on suddenly and last a long time. Cold symptoms come on more gradually and resolve in 7-14 days.
- What color is your nasal discharge? Allergies have thin, clear discharge, while cold symptoms will produce yellow/greenish nasal discharge.
- Itchy, watery eyes? It could be allergies.
You can treat allergy symptoms with over-the-counter and prescription medications, as well as allergy shots. Lifestyle changes and avoiding triggers are important too. While there is no cure for allergies several types of medications are available to help ease symptoms like congestion and runny nose. Allergy drugs include antihistamines, decongestants, combination drugs, corticosteroids, and others. (4)
Natural treatments for allergy symptoms are also available. Both herbal supplements and homeopathic remedies can be used to relieve allergy symptoms. Four favorites can be found at Native Remedies: Mucus-Clear™, AllergiClear-S™, AllergiClear-M™, and SOS HistaDrops™.
Whether it is seasonal allergies or a cold, Mucus-Clear is my go-to homeopathic remedy for excess mucus. When symptoms first appear, I follow the acute dosing instructions and then revert to the maintenance dose as needed. Mucus-Clear consists of three biochemic tissue salts, Kali mur, Kali sulph, and Kali bich, that target excessive mucus.
AllergiClear-S is an herbal supplement that promotes respiratory health and clear bronchial passages. AllergiClear-S contains a select combination of ingredients that have been used throughout history to address seasonal allergy symptoms and inflammation.
AllergiClear-M is another homeopathic remedy but addresses more symptoms than just mucus. AllergiClear-M addresses mucus; red, watery and burning eyes; and irritated sore throats. Dosing for acute symptoms and maintenance dosing is available.
AllergiClear-S and –M have been specially formulated to work together for maximum efficacy. While each will address symptoms effectively on their own, many people find the combination of the herbal supplement and homeopathic remedy to offer the best relief.
SOS HistaDrops is an herbal remedy specially formulated to support immune system health and normal histamine levels. Consisting of three certified organic ingredients SOS HistaDrops help maintain balance in the immune system, normal histamine levels and support clear eyes, noses, and easy breathing.
Aside from supplements or medications to ease allergy symptoms, there are lifestyle changes you can take to help defeat allergies: (5)
- If the pollen count is high, keep doors and windows closed to protect indoor air.
- Wear a mask. An N95 respirator mask will block 95% of small particles such as pollen and other allergens
- Eat healthy. A healthy diet is good for your whole body.
- Drink more water. The extra liquid can thin mucus.
- Inhale some steam. This trick can ease a stuffy nose and help you breathe easier.
- Avoid cigarette smoke
Understanding your allergy triggers, lifestyle choices and treatment options can help you mitigate your allergy symptoms and enjoy all of life’s seasons.
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by Mary Ellen Kosanke –
- American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology acai.org/allergies
- American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology www.acai.org/allergies