How to stop the seasonal sniffles

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Rosalind Saul

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It’s officially allergy season. That means runny noses, congestion, sneezing, dry and itchy eyes, and even raspy voices. Since Covid, allergies have been looked at as a possible Covid infection. Any and all sicknesses are feared in the public’s eye as they could be the Covid-19 infection. However, allergies don’t usually require people to stop doing their everyday activities like school, work, and even sports. Allergy season looks a little more scary now, but it’s the same as it’s always been. If your sinuses are bothering you, there are plenty of ways to treat your allergies and even preventative measures to take.
The best way to help your body out during allergy season is to prevent allergens from hurting your body in the first place! There are plenty of preventative measures people can pick that best suits them. First things first, try and stay clear of allergy triggers. Limiting your exposure will prevent any infections and even symptoms. Staying inside on windy days, avoiding lawn chores, regularly washing your clothes that’ve been exposed to the pollen/allergens, and shower regularly after being outside are all ways to help prevent annoying sinus issues. Regularly checking pollen counts can even aid you when trying to figure out your week’s schedule. Keep outdoor activities on days with a lower pollen count. Taking allergy medicine when you know pollen counts are high is also a preventative measure to take. Weather channels and weather apps should provide pollen counts. Even small things like driving with your windows up and making sure your car’s inside air is on can make a huge difference in how you feel during this allergy season. Despite the multitude of preventative measures one can take, allergies can still seep through the cracks and into our bodies.
Once allergies have entered your system, it’s time to be on defense. There are many things people can do to relieve symptoms and ultimately avoid any type of sinus infection. Over-the-counter remedies are a great place to start. The most commonly thought of these remedies are probably oral antihistamines, which would be your normal allergy medications taken by mouth. If you are new to this, some good options are Claritin, Zyrtec, and Allegra. These medications can relieve those annoying allergy symptoms like itchy, dry eyes and sneezing and runny noses. If your main problem is being stuffy and the aching pain in your face and head from that stuffiness, decongestants are a great reliever of that. There are oral decongestants, which drain your sinuses, providing temporary relief of stuffiness. There are even nasal decongestants, which is a nasal spray that you spray up your nose a couple times a day. If this option interests you, using this option is only best a few days in a row. Long term use can cause worsened symptoms. Any nasal spray should be used before symptoms get bad; it’ll help prevent any symptoms from worsening and provide relief. If your allergies are just killing you and you have lost all hope in breathing through your nose again and being in public without needing a tissue every ten minutes, there are combined medications that are both antihistamines and decongestants. The most popular options would be Allegra-D and Claritin-D. One of the most quick-acting sinus relief methods would be rinsing your sinuses with saline solution. The rinsing directly wipes out mucus and allergens from your sinus cavity. To do a nasal rinse, you will need a squeeze bottle, but preferably a neti pot, and use water that’s clean (distilled, sterile, or previously boiled and cooled). Of course, if these defenses don’t seem to be working, visit your doctor. Some people have problems with seasonal allergies, and your doctor can provide you with specific medication to relieve you of those nasty sinuses.
During this allergy season, make sure to use preventative measures and stay on top of your symptoms. Allergens can bring all types of nasty infections, so don’t be hesitant about going to a doctor. Be safe out there!

“Seasonal Allergies: Nip Them in the Bud.” Mayo Clinic, Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 16 Apr. 2020, https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/hay-fever/in-depth/seasonal-allergies/art-20048343.