Natural Relief For Allergy Symptoms

tissues and hot drink

What is an allergy? 

An allergy is an immune response that causes harm to the body in some way, when the immune system reacts to a substance (which is harmless to most people) to which it has become hypersensitive. Allergies are a chronic condition and have no cure. If you have an allergy, your immune system treats the allergen (the offending substance) as an invader, as if it were a bacteria, a fungus, or virus that can cause disease. The allergen creates a chain reaction in your immune system causing many potent chemicals to be released, one of which is histamine. Allergies can be mildly irritating to life threatening.

The chemicals released by the immune system can cause symptoms such as:

  • Itching in the nose, roof of the mouth, throat, eyes
  • Sneezing
  • Stuffy nose (congestion)
  • Runny nose
  • Tearing eyes
  • Dark circles under the eyes
  • Food allergies may present with vomiting, diarrhea, respiratory symptoms or anaphylaxis immediately after ingestion of the culprit allergen

The best way to prevent allergy symptoms is avoidance, but that’s not always possible. Just like you would avoid taking medicine or eating food that would make you sick, you should try to avoid coming in contact with allergens. Remember that not all allergies are created equal. Seasonal allergies, such as allergies to pollen, are more easily avoided than year round allergies, such as allergies to mold, dust mites, etc.

Seasonal Allergy Avoidance Strategies

  • Wear a dust mask or N-95 respirator when working outside during peak allergy season. 
    • Pollen – spring – March to June in Georgia
    • Mold – fall – August to October in Georgia
  • Remove clothes you have worn outside and be sure to shower daily to remove pollen or mold spores from your body 
  • Keep windows closed
  • Change your air conditioning filter at least once every 3 months and use high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter
  • Don’t hang clothes on outdoor clotheslines
  • Delegate yard work during peak season to reduce your contact with the allergens

Indoor Allergy Avoidance Strategies

  • Change your air conditioning filter at least once every 3 months and use high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter
  • Clean floors often using a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter to keep allergens from reentering the air after being vacuumed
  • Keep indoor air dry with a dehumidifier
  • Shoes track in dirt, allergens, and all kinds of germs! Keep these out of your house by corralling family members shoes by the door. Invite guests to make themselves at home, and remove their shoes as well.
  • For mold allergies: 
    • Clean what you can see
    • Prevent new growth
    • Get a professional inspection if you suspect the problem may be more than an isolated area

Natural Allergy Home Remedies

When avoidance is not enough, there are natural remedies you can use to help relieve symptoms and remove allergens from your body and environment.

  1. Saline Spray – Using a saline nasal spray, rinse sinuses as often as needed, 2-3 times a day. You can make your own saline spray by combining 1 cup of sterile water, ¼ tsp of baking soda and ¼ tsp of salt. Simply mix and add to a spray bottle.
  2. Neti Pot – Similar to the saline rinse, a neti pot is a different method for irrigating the sinuses. They look like small pots with a long spout. You can use the same solution in the neti pot as in the spray. For a video on how to use a Neti Pot go to: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PJyMz97hJFs
  3. Steam Inhalation – place your head directly over a pot of hot water (or hot tea), cover your headhot tea with a towel, and breathe in the steam slowly and carefully. This can help open clogged sinuses. 1 to 2 drops of peppermint essential oil can also help open sinuses, but be careful! It can irritate eyes as well.
  4. Warm Washcloth – a warm washcloth placed across the face can give temporary relief to sinus pressure.
  5. Take good care of yourself – Anytime you don’t feel well, be sure to drink plenty of water and get more rest. Staying hydrated helps your sinuses work properly, and stay clear.

While you can’t get rid of your allergies, having them shouldn’t make you miss out on life. We hope we have given you some strategies you can use to avoid both indoor and outdoor allergens and reduce your symptoms. 

We’re Here When You Need Us.

Call Branch Environmental. We’re experts not only at mold removal, but at determining and remediating the underlying causes. From hidden mold sources to major contaminants. We can identify exactly what is going on in your home and rid it of environmental toxins, often for good.

Disclaimer:

Information contained in this blog post is not intended to replace or provide medical advice. NO information on this site should be used to diagnose, treat, prevent or cure any disease or condition.