While many look forward to spring and its abundance of flowers, for allergy sufferers it’s more likely to be a season of stuffy noses, sneezing and itchy, watery, irritated eyes. For some symptoms may also include sore throats and headaches. Fortunately, there are things you can do about this.

Find out the source of your allergy. An allergist can pinpoint the plants and pollen causing your sensitivity.

Avoid the outdoors. During allergy season spend as much time as possible indoors, especially in the mornings and on warm, dry, windy days, when pollen counts are the highest. If you normally run in the park, consider joining a gym for the spring and run on a treadmill.

Wear a hat outdoors and wash your hair often. Hair is a magnet to pollen; wash your hair when you go to bed so there’s no transfer onto your pillow. If you normally use gels or sprays, avoid them during allergy season. They are “pollen magnets”.

Wash your linen and clothes more often. And when you do, don’t hang them outside to dry. They just pick up pollen from the air.

No window fans. Use an air conditioner or “recirculate” setting. The fan will just take the pollen in the air and spread it around.

Use a saltwater nasal spray. 1 tsp of table salt with 8 oz of water used twice a day can help wash allergens out of your nasal passages.

Eat allergy-fighting foods. Foods rich in Vitamin C – oranges, broccoli, grapefruit, kale, brussels sprouts, green tea, berries, apples.

Sniff the RIGHT flowers. YES to periwinkles, gladiolus, iris, begonias, orchids and bougainvilleas. NO to daisies, sunflowers, zinnias, dahlias, chrysanthemums, lilies, gardenias, narcissus, and star jasmine.

Your dog! Wash his feet off when he comes in. Pet dander can also trigger, so bathe your pets often and wash their bedding when you wash your own.’

Leave your shoes by the door. Avoid strong fragrances. Wear movie-star sunglasses – the larger the better. Helps keep pollen from being blown into your eyes..


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