Ahhh yes, April is here. Before we get May Flowers, we have April Showers and the pollen is here already! If you are new to Northern Nevada, consider yourself warned, allergy season around here is rough. There is a price to be paid for the luxury of having the majestic Sierra Mountains, AND the beautiful desert landscapes around us. And that price is paid in burning eyes, snot and congestion.
Ask any longtime resident of Northern Nevada, and they might drop some knowledge on how they get by the pollen sand storm that is March thru September around here. Or read on, as I, your Lunchlady, give you my Top Ten Tips for Surviving allergy Season in Northern Nevada… as only a lifer can do.
(Disclaimer… I am not a doctor, I only play Dr. Mom in real life lol)
- Neti Pot… First, Google it. Then, get one. It’s recommended that you use it several times a day, and some people even swear by how well they work, tossing OTC medicine aside. I am not one of those people. I do like to keep one around, and discipline myself enough to use it once or twice a day. It does take some getting used to, using the Neti Pot, but practice makes perfect, and you’ll be rinsing all that pollen and dust down the sink and away from your sinuses in no time.
- Humidifier… Keeping one of these machines blowing moisture into your space helps keep your sinuses moist, as well as your throat. Allergy medicine itself can dry everything out, add mouth breathing to that and you’ve lost your voice. You can also add essential oils like eucalyptus that help with breathing as well.
- Local Honey… It’s not entirely an old wives tale that locally harvested honey can help allergies. It’s kinda similar to how allergists treat allergies by injecting you with the thing you are allergic to. According to Reno’s very own Hidden Valley Honey…“Studies have shown a correlation between local pollen intake and a reduction of allergies. Because raw, unprocessed, local honey contains some pollen, people believe that honey also can help allergies. While there haven’t been many studies done on the correlation between local honey intake and the reduction of allergies, many doctors recommend it and a lot of people swear by it.” If nothing else, sipping hot tea with local honey coats and soothes an irritated throat. You can get a higher concentration of the local pollen by giving bee pollen grains a try. According to Hidden Valley Honey , if you are taking local pollen for your allergies, start with small amounts to avoid reacting negatively. Some recommend that you put a few pollen grains under your tongue and let them dissolve.
- Air Conditioning… Is your friend, open windows are not. This is a hard one for me because I love fresh air. But I have learned the hard way that on high pollen days its best to keep the windows closed, even in my car as much as I can. This keeps those evil botanical’s out, and off your clothes, hair, furniture, and pillows.
- Zyrtec… Also known as the generic name Cetirizine, is a potent second-generation antihistamine used in the treatment of hay fever, and allergies, according to Wikkipedia. As far as antihistamines go I say pick your poison, there is a lot that work well, but I like this one because it helps with pet allergies as well as being a safe bet for kiddos.
- Flonase… Is a corticosteroid nasal spray. GoodRX.com says, Fluticasone is sprayed into the nose to help relieve the stuffy or runny nose, irritation, sneezing, and discomfort of hay fever, other nasal allergies. Lunchlady says, without it I can’t breathe March thru September.
- Mucinex… No it is not a usually taken for allergies per say. Most people only reach for it when they have a chest cold. But my Dr suggested I give it a try when I was getting one sinus infection after another during allergy season. It works the same way to thin mucus in the sinuses to give some much welcome relief from sinus pressure.
- Bedtime shower… Some folks would never think to shower in the evening if they have a routine to do so in the morning. But if your allergies are really acting up try showering before bed for a week. This washes the pollen out of your hair, and thus off your bedding and pillows where you will be laying your face while you sleep every night. On the same note weekly washing of linens in hot water helps too.
- Alkalol Nasal Wash… A Natural Soothing Nasal Wash, Mucus Solvent and Cleaner. (not to be confused with alcohol, that would burn) I found this one day at the drug store and in desperation gave it a try with my neti pot. It comes as a premixed solution ready to use right out of the box. It can be used full strength or mixed with saline or distilled or sterilized water to gently clear the nasal passages of mucus and allergens, such as dust and pollen. I found it on Amazon.com for about $20 and it comes highly recommended with 4 and a half of 5 stars.
- California! Health Central.com says California is one of the top 5 states to live in if you suffer from allergies… MOVE THERE!
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