How To Get Your Allergy Symptoms Under Control
If you seem to have itchy eyes and respiratory irritation every spring, you might have an allergy. You can develop allergies at any age, so you shouldn't discount the possibility of having an allergy just because your symptoms start later in life. You can develop an allergy to just about anything, such as pet dander, pollen, and food. If your symptoms are bothersome, or seem to be getting worse, you should see an allergist for testing and treatment. Here are some things that might help ease your symptoms.
There are many types of allergy medications you can try. You can take nasal sprays, eye drops, and oral drugs. Some of them are available only by prescription and others can be bought over the counter. If you tend to have mild symptoms at certain times of the year, you may be able to manage your condition with over-the-counter medications you take for a couple of months. However, if your symptoms last most of the year, you may need to take prescription medications.
Your allergist may give you a decongestant or antihistamine. These drugs work to reduce inflammation in your airway and reduce congestion. In the case of a severe allergy, such as to a bee sting or peanuts, you may need to carry injectable medication at all times that you can use when you have an exposure. If you decide to try medications to treat your allergy symptoms, it's a good idea to discuss it with your doctor first to make sure you choose the most effective over-the-counter drug, and that it won't interact with any other medications and supplements you take.
Immunotherapy is a type of allergy treatment where you are given tiny doses of an allergen to build up your tolerance. These allergy shots are often given to children, but they can also be given to you as an adult if you develop allergies later in life. First, you'll need to undergo allergy testing to find out what triggers your symptoms. Then you'll receive shots on a set schedule spread out over many weeks. The shots gradually get your body accustomed to the allergens, so your symptoms are less severe when you come in contact with something that normally causes a reaction.
Although it may seem obvious, avoidance is the number one way to manage your allergy symptoms. If you're allergic to pollen, it may not be possible to stay indoors all spring, but you can take steps to keep your home as allergen-free as possible. Do that by keeping your windows closed, running an air purifier in your home, and vacuuming frequently. Also, you may want to remove your shoes, coat, and other clothing in the garage so you don't track pollen into your home. If you can't keep allergens out of your home, which might happen if you're allergic to the family pet, then you definitely want to turn your bedroom and possibly the family room where you spend most of your time, into an allergy-free zone.
Dealing with allergies can be frustrating. It's tiring to constantly have itchy eyes and a runny nose. However, if you work with an allergist so you can positively identify your triggers, that can help you learn what to avoid. And since it isn't realistically possible to completely avoid every allergen all the time, finding the right medication to take when you need it will make your life with allergies much more bearable. For more information, talk to an allergist like Billings Clinic.