Spring is right around the corner and with it, the misery of spring allergies. Flowers, weeds, trees, and all other plants are beginning the reproduction process of releasing pollen into the air. From winter’s end to the start of summer, 20 million American adults and 6 million children suffer from spring allergy symptoms.
As the new season approaches, it’s helpful to learn how to recognize allergy symptoms in you and your children. Understanding that what you are suffering from is allergies will set you on a better path toward treatment and prevention.
Symptoms of Spring Allergies
While allergies may manifest differently in each person, there is a general set of symptoms that most people experience.
- Sneezing- Your brain tells your nose to expel any invading pollen with extreme prejudice. If your sneezing is not accompanied by a fever and extreme body aches, it’s most likely allergies and not a cold.
- Coughing and Sore Throat- Irritants cause your sinuses to overproduce mucus which causes post nasal drip. The constant drainage causes a sore throat and can trigger coughing.
- Itchy, Watering Eyes- All allergy symptoms are the result of your body leasing histamines to fight the invading irritants. Histamines often cause the eyes to swell and itch.
- Puffy, Discolored Eyes- Also called allergic shiners, congestion in the small blood vessels in the skin under the eyes causes the skin to swell and turn a slight blue color.
- Headaches- Pressure builds up in the sinuses can cause severe congestion headaches.
- Itchy, Dry Skin- Mostly found in children, but in some adults as well, allergen-induced eczema causes inflammation and irritation in the skin.
- Asthma- Allergen-induced asthma triggers an emergency reaction in the lungs, inflaming the airways and making it hard to breathe.
- Clogged, Itchy Ears- Congestion can make ears feel clogged and uncomfortable. Eating certain fruits at the height of allergy season can also cause itchy ears and swollen lips.
- Red, Creased Nose- This symptom is usually found in children who aren’t sure how to communicate their discomfort. Constant rubbing can cause redness and form a crease on the top surface of the nose.
If you are suffering from allergies, you don’t have to soldier through. Speak to your doctor about how to manage your symptoms. Most allergies can be treated with over the counter medications, such as:
- Nasal Sprays to reduce swelling in the nasal passages.
- Antihistamines to reduce sneezing, congestion, and itchy eyes.
- Decongestants to shrink nasal passages and clear stuffy noses.
For more mild allergy symptoms, using a simple at-home saline nasal rinse can effectively reduce sinus swelling. If your allergies are severe and debilitating, your doctor might prescribe immunotherapy, or allergy shots, for long-term relief.
Oftentimes, the most effective treatment for the symptoms of spring allergies is prevention. Choosing to be proactive can help you stop symptoms in their tracks before they even begin. Take the time to work ahead and protect your system.
- Avoid coming in contact with outside allergens- Keep the windows closed at night, don’t do outside work early in the morning, and change your clothes and shower after extended time outside.
- Keep your air clean- Reduce pollens and irritants inside the house by using air filters and vacuuming regularly.
- Control inside air- using air conditioning and a dehumidifier will help keep the air in your home from irritating your symptoms.
- Proactive Medication- If you know you suffer from annual allergies, speak to your doctor about starting allergy medication a week or so before spring gets into swing.
Are You Experiencing Spring Allergy Symptoms?
No one should have to suffer through spring allergies every year. Let yourself enjoy the season this time around and make an appointment with your doctor to discuss treatment. At BASS Medical Group, your care is our top priority. If you have questions or would like to make an appointment, call (925) 350-4044 today. It is important to remember that you are not alone. Bass Medical is here to take care of you and your family.