If you happen to sneeze and cough incessantly during certain parts of the year, you may be affected with seasonal allergies. According to ACAAI, seasonal allergies affect 40 million to 60 million Americans. A lot of people experience seasonal allergies, and it can make them miserable. Also known as hay fever or allergic rhinitis, seasonal allergies occur in a particular season when one’s immune system overreacts to allergens present in the environment such as pollen. These allergens trigger an immune response which can include sneezing, runny nose and congestion, to name a few. Seasonal allergies generally occur during the pollination period of certain plants in spring, summer or fall. In many parts of the US, these allergies affect individuals in the period from February to early summer. In this article, we will discuss seasonal allergies diagnosis and treatment.
The symptoms of seasonal allergies can differ in case of different individuals. The common symptoms include:
Stuffy nose as a result of congestion
Watering, itching or redness in eyes
Puffy, swollen eyelids
Itchy sinuses, throat, or ear canals
Fatigue caused from lack of quality sleep due to nasal obstruction.
If you notice that you’re frequently getting sick with cough or congestion, especially at certain times of a year, you must consult an allergist. You don’t have to bear with your allergy your entire life. You can seek help and get relief from your condition. The best way to diagnose and treat the symptoms of seasonal allergies is to work with your allergist to find what works for you. Your doctor may ask for details, history and frequency of your symptoms. Furthermore, they may ask questions about your home and work environment and your medical history.
They may inspect your ears, nose, and throat to diagnose the condition. Your allergist may also suggest doing a skin test, which involves administering minute doses of suspected allergens to your skin in order to assess if you are sensitized to these allergens.
One of the most effective ways to manage your allergy is avoidance. Avoidance measures differ depending on the allergen you are sensitized to. You can take the following steps to avoid the allergens that trigger your symptoms of hay fever:
Try to stay indoors on dry, windy days or when there is pollen count in the environment. Check the internet, your local TV, radio station or your local newspaper for pollen forecasts and current pollen levels
When outdoors, use sunglasses to avoid pollen getting into your eyes.
Wear a pollen mask during the high pollen season.
Keep your windows shut and use a HEPA filter in your air conditioning system.
Keep your indoor humidity low with a dehumidifier.
Make sure to wash your hands after petting any animals.
Wash your clothes when you come home from outside.
After diagnosis, your allergist may prescribe one or more medications or treatments to control your symptoms. These can include intranasal corticosteroids, over-the-counter decongestants, antihistamines, allergy shots, sublingual tablets and leukotriene pathway inhibitors. Based on your individual condition, your doctor may suggest ways to control the allergy and minimize the symptoms. Your best means to find the cause of your suffering and stop it, is to follow up with an allergist. To seek seasonal allergies treatment in Michigan, contact us at The Allergy Suite in Novi.