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Controlling Your Winter Allergies

Controlling Your Winter Allergies

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Simple techniques that will improve your winter allergy symptoms.

Many people wouldn’t relate winter months to allergies; however, allergy symptoms can arise out of conditions inside your home or workplace.

Dr. Jack Patel, a certified ear, nose, throat and sinus surgeon, goes in depth about non-seasonal allergies saying, “They exist despite the season variation, temperature fluctuation, and geographic location.” Indoor allergens that may be affecting are dust mites, mold, fungus, or even your pets.

“ Up to 20 percent of Americans struggle with winter allergies every year,” says Patel.

One of the most prominent concerns with winter allergies is that it may start as something simple, but turn into something slightly more serious.

Turning the heat on will make the air drier than it was before. This can turn into nosebleeds and very dry skin, ultimately leaving someone vulnerable to infection. Doctors recommend using nasal saline products that will open up the sinuses and lower the chance of catching a secondary infection.

Patel shares helpful advice in order to combat indoor allergies during experienced in the winter.

  • Regularly cleaning- vacuuming, dusting, and wiping down surfaces will limit the amount of dust that collects inside.
  • Use a humidifier- a humidifier will add excess moisture into the air and prevent dryness of the eyes, nose, and skin. Although it is important to know that dust mites flourish in moist climates. Patel explains that it’s best to keep humidity levels to 50 percent.
  • Clean sheets once a week- dust mites can grow on blankets, sheets, and pillow cases if they aren’t washed often enough. Using hypoallergenic covers for your mattress and pillows can help resist dust mites.
  • Give your pets a bath- Washing your pets up to once a week can not only keep them feeling clean, but also wash away some of the things that may be giving you or others allergy symptoms.

Sometimes even after taking all of the precautions, your symptoms don’t seem to be getting any better. This may be something out of your control. Your place of work and public areas may also contain allergy inducing conditions. Dander from pets and dust may travel with their owner, on their clothes, and shoes making their way to you.

Winter Allergy Remedies

Finding a solution may lead you to over-the-counter options. Many medications will improve symptoms, but Patel mentions that some medications aren’t as effective.

If you cannot exactly identify your symptoms to the description label, ask your doctor for the best solution. Patel says, “A few of the allergy medications have many side effects such as raising heart rates, trouble urinating, and drying some tissue out.”

Better alternatives are decongestants like Flonase or Nasacort. These medications are less likely to cause drowsiness and sedation.

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