While many look forward to Spring and its abundance of flowers, for allergy sufferers it's more likely to be a season of stuffy noses, sneezing and watery, itchy, irritated eyes. For some, these symptoms may escalate to include sore throats and headaches. If you experience several of these symptoms and they persist for more than a couple of weeks, you may be suffering from seasonal allergies. If this is the case, fortunately there are things you can do about it. Wear a hat when outdoors, and wash your hair often. Your hair is like a magnet to pollen, so try washing your hair before you go to bed so as not to transfer it to your pillow when you sleep. If you normally use hair gels or sprays, avoid them during allergy season, because they become "pollen magnets."
Wash your linen and clothes more often. And when you do, don't hang them on a line outdoors to dry. This just allows the newly-clean clothes to pick up pollen in the air. Use a saltwater nasal spray. You can make this yourself by mixing a teaspoon of table salt with eight ounces of water. Using this spray twice a day can help to wash allergens out of your nasal passages, and to keep them moisturized. Eat allergy-fighting foods. Foods that are rich in Vitamin C have been shown to unblock clogged sinuses, so indulge in oranges, broccoli, grapefruit, kale and brussels sprouts. The flavonoid quercetin has been shown to inhibit the release of histamines that trigger the symptoms of allergies, so adding foods high in quercetin like black and green tea, berries, apples, and red onions may help. Some studies have indicated that papaya and pineapple, which contain bromelain, can reduce seasonal allergy symptoms. Leave your shoes by the door. Pollen and other allergens catch a ride on your feet, just as they do on Rover's. Consider ditching your carpets. For allergy sufferers, your carpets may be the worst choice possible in floor coverings, because they tend to trap allergens of all kinds. If you love your carpets, vacuum them often, preferably with a machine that has HEPA filters.
Get adjusted! The immune system regulates your allergy response. Adjustments work with the body via the vagus nerve to balance the reaction and promote a more normal (vs hyperactive) response to things like pollen, dander and dust.