Hay fever and other manifestations of allergies are caused by breathing in airborne allergens such as pollens or other triggers. Your body produces mucous, your eyes water, you sneeze, post nasal drip may cause a cough, sinus pressure may cause a headache. Some allergy attacks may feel no different from being ill with a virus or bacteria, and the inflammation and mucous production it causes leaves you vulnerable to a secondary infection. Possible secondary infections include ear infections and bronchitis.
Ease Your Allergy Burdon
What are some things that you can do to ease your allergy burden? Avoidance of allergens is not really a viable option unless you want to spend these gorgeous spring months inside with closed windows watching the sunshine and fun pass you by. Keeping your home clean and free from allergens is viable, however. Vacuuming upholstery and carpets regularly with a Hepa filter-containing vacuum cleaner, dusting surfaces with nontoxic dusting products, as well as washing linens and curtains will keep dust and pollens from settling in your home and allow you to breathe easy when you are indoors and especially while you’re sleeping.
What if that’s not enough? What if you or your family can’t have a day outdoors without feeling like you’ve been hit by a truck? There are certain natural substances that boost your body’s ability to combat allergens, as well as some that lower that same ability. Some of the most important that can help are antioxidants, such as the ever popular Vitamin C. You can get antioxidants and bioflavanoids from your food by eating plenty of dark or bright-colored vegetables and fruits daily or you can take supplemental Vitamin C.
Adding good foods into and taking inflammatory, mucous-producing foods, such as dairy, out of your diet is great prevention for allergy symptoms, and an important part of treatment as well.
When to See Your Doctor
What if that’s still not enough? Coming in to your Naturopathic physician at the turn of your allergies from annoying to intolerable can be very valuable. You can receive treatment in office such as acupuncture, nasosympatico therapy, or homeopathic prescriptions to provide instant relief. We may recommend a non-drowsy, safe, and natural antihistamine such as D-Hist, which is available in chewable form for children as well, to take during allergy season. You can take D-Hist as you would a drug like Claritin, but without the nasty side effects like fatigue or dry mouth. We can prescribe at-home hydrotherapies to help cleanse nasal passages and stimulate proper blood flow, relieving sinus pressure, pain, and congestion and modulating your immune system. Have a proper physical exam to determine if you are developing a secondary infection and get proper treatment for that as well.
You don’t have to wait until you get a secondary infection or you miss work to be well from allergies. Come in, be treated and educated, and be well!