With the long summer days, when the sun comes out early and sets late in the evening, the pests and allergens in the air also increase. It’s never too soon to prepare for allergy season. According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, an estimated 50 million people suffer from allergies. Anything from medicines, plants and even dust and certain foods can set of an allergic reaction. Here’s what you can do to help prepare yourself and your loved ones for the pesky, summer seasonal allergies.
Stay cool and rested. The heat tends to trigger and sensitize your immune system. There’s more going on in your body than you are aware of. If you maintain a normal body temperature and relax often, your body will stay comfortable and have more stamina. Be aware: high temperatures, heat and pollution in the air can be very bad for people with asthma, so be sure to carry your inhaler.
Just because you are going outside for fresh air doesn’t mean that the air is 100 percent pure. One of the most common summer allergy triggers is ragweed, which causes symptoms like stuffy or runny nose, sneezing and itchy eyes. It can travel hundreds of miles in the wind. Even if it doesn’t grow where you live, if you’re allergic to it the consequences can be severe. Take some medicine that will help your immune system maintain its level of function. Sometimes medication doesn’t work immediately when symptoms start to kick in, so it’s best to take it before you leave the house. Don’t let a case of the sniffles catch you off guard while you’re out with your family at the park.
Drink plenty of fluids. Your body is mostly comprised of water, so put back in what your body sweats off on the hottest days of summer. Although dehydration is not an allergy, it can be very destructive to your immune system and can make you more sensitive to allergies.
Keep your eyes covered. Using big, wrap-around sunglasses can help keep pollen from getting in your eyes. The biggest allergy trigger of the summer is pollen from trees, grass and weeds. Be sure to keep your sunglasses on you. Not only are they stylish and protect your eyes from the sun, they are also a big help when that unexpected burst of wind brushes into your face.
If you’re allergic to bees or other stinging insects then it’s best to avoid them. Uncovered food and opened soda cans will attract bees, as will perfume and bright clothing. If you get bitten, these stings can be very dangerous to your skin and cause serious skin reactions that need medical attention. Do be aware of your surroundings and avoid bee or wasp nests.
Inside your home, dust mites and molds tend to increase during the summer, so it’s important to keep your home clean and cool. Molds tend to form in your bathroom and basement, and dust mites live in warm places including your bed, fabrics and carpet. It’s necessary to clean frequently and locate residue early before it starts to affect the air in your home. So this summer try to stay indoors as much as possible. Keep your windows and doors closed to keep allergens and pollens out of your house. Use an air purifier. Clean shelves and vents where pollens can collect. Vacuum your carpet frequently, especially if you have indoor pets.
Don’t let the summer allergies keep you from having a good time with your family and loved ones. Be prepared and be in control of your body. The more you take care of your body, the more time you will get to enjoy the summer worry free about allergies. If you’re unsure about what you can be allergic to, visit your physician.