How To Deal With Allergies – Symptoms, Tips, And Tricks

Posted May 7, 2019 by Mitch Fraker - See Editorial Guidelines

Allergies can come from a multitude of things. From seasonal allergies, all the way to pet allergies, the signs and symptoms of any type of allergic reaction can be tough to deal with.  In this blog, we will cover the most common types of allergies and some simple steps you can take to reduce allergy symptoms and allergic reactions if you are experiencing them.

Seasonal Allergies

Seasonal allergies, like other types of allergies, develop when the body’s immune system overreacts to something around you in the environment. This usually happens during spring, summer or fall when certain plants start to pollinate.  In most places in the United States, spring allergies begin in February and last until early summer. Tree pollination begins earliest in the year and is then followed by grass pollination later in the spring and summer and ragweed in the late summer and fall. If you live in a more tropical area, grass may pollinate throughout most of the year. Warmer winter temperatures can also cause plants to pollinate early. A rainy spring can also promote faster plant growth and lead to an increase in mold, causing symptoms to last further into the fall season. The most common cause for fall allergies is ragweed, a plant that grows almost everywhere, but more so on the East Coast and in the Midwest regions. Ragweed blooms and releases pollen from August to November. In many areas of the country, ragweed pollen levels are the highest from early to mid-September. Seasonal allergies typically cause red and itchy eyes, sneezing, congestion, a runny nose, and other bothersome symptoms.

Below, we will give you a few practical tips for keeping seasonal allergies at bay.

seasonal allergies

  • Stay inside the house on dry and windy days. The best time to go outside is after a good rain because it helps clear pollen from the air.
  • Wear a protective mask when gardening, mowing the lawn or doing yard work. If your allergies are really bad, you may consider delegating these tasks to someone else.
  • Antihistamines – They can be taken as pills, liquids, nasal sprays, or eye drops. Over-the-counter antihistamine eye drops can relieve symptoms like red itchy eyes, while nasal sprays can be used to treat the symptoms like congestion. Check with your healthcare provider about which allergy medication is right for you. If you are prescribed a brand name allergy medication that you cannot afford, Prescription Hope can help.

Food Allergies

food allergies

A Food allergy is an abnormal response to a food that is triggered by your body’s immune system. In adults, the most common foods that could trigger allergic reactions are fish, shellfish, peanuts, and tree nuts, such as walnuts. For children, foods that may cause allergies are eggs, milk, peanuts, tree nuts, soy, and wheat. Food allergies are estimated to affect 4% – 6% of children and 4% of adults, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Food allergies will usually cause some sort of reaction every time the trigger food is eaten. Symptoms can vary from person to person, and you may not always experience the same symptoms every time you eat a trigger food. Allergic reactions to food can affect the skin, gastrointestinal tract, respiratory tract, and the cardiovascular system.

The best way to treat and prevent allergic reactions is to know exactly what triggers the allergic reaction and stay away from it, especially when talking about food allergens. Here are a few tips to making sure that you don’t experience an allergic reaction to the food you are eating.

  • Always read labels to be aware of what you are eating
  • Be careful while cooking to only use ingredients that you know your body can handle
  • Ask questions when dining out to ensure the food you are ordering won’t cause an allergic reaction
  • If you have a known food allergy, always carry your medication with you when eating out

For more information on what to do in the event of a food allergy, click here.

Drug Allergies

A drug allergy is an abnormal reaction from your immune system to a medication you have taken. Any medication including over-the-counter, prescription, or herbal medicine is capable of inducing a drug allergy. The most common signs and symptoms of a drug allergy reaction are hives, rash or fever, and swelling or itching.

Below, we will give you a few important things to consider if you are experiencing drug allergies.

  • Make sure all of your healthcare providers are aware of your drug allergy and the symptoms you have experienced
  • Ask your healthcare provider or prescribing doctor about alternatives to the drug that caused an allergic reaction
  • Ask your healthcare provider about related drugs that you should avoid

If you are experiencing a drug allergy and need to change medication, or simply can’t afford the medication you are taking, contact us here.

Pet Allergies

The proteins found in a pet’s dander, skin flakes, saliva, and urine can cause an allergic reaction in some people, and even more so in individuals who have asthma or other allergies. Cat and dog allergy reactions normally include swelling and itching of the eyes and a stuffy nose. In the United States, as many as three in 10 people with allergies have allergic reactions to cats and dogs. The easiest way to avoid pet allergies is to not have cats or dogs, and not visit homes where there are pets either. However, pet allergies can be a social problem making it difficult to visit friends and family who may have cats and/or dogs.

If you have a pet that you are allergic to, here are some things you can do to help.

pet allergies

  • Keep your bedroom/sleeping area pet free
  • Keep your home clean – vacuum and change air filters frequently
  • Consider allergy shots – allergy shots help you develop protective antibodies so that you won’t have an allergic reaction when you are exposed to an allergen
  • Wash your hands frequently – always keep your hands clean after playing with your furry loved one

 

 

Conclusion

Overall, any type of allergic reaction is no fun. Whether you are experiencing seasonal allergies, food allergies, drug allergies, or pet allergies, you will want to make sure that you are aware of the allergen, as well as are taking preventative measures against it. There are many different over the counter and brand name medications available to treat allergy symptoms as well. Be sure to check with your healthcare provider if you are considering taking medications for allergies that you may be experiencing, and be sure to contact us if you are experiencing issues affording any medication that you have been prescribed.



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