It’s allergy season once again, and more than 50 million Americans are trying to find ways to end symptoms. With all of the potential remedies, medications, and contraptions available today, it can get confusing to decide which treatment path is best for you.
HealthJoy’s doctors are here to help – according to Dr. Shanu Kurd, you should cut through the madness and stick to some easy, basic treatments to calm those pesky symptoms.
First things first. What are seasonal allergies, anyway? Seasonal allergies can arise at any time and are worse in the spring and fall. Pollens from trees, grass, weeds, pet dander, and mold spores will trigger allergy symptoms this season.
People suffering from eczema or asthma are more likely to have allergy symptoms. Common symptoms include itchy and watery eyes, cough and congestion, sneezing, and even skin rashes. Severe allergy symptoms can cause systemic systems, such as fatigue and a mild flu-like reaction. Because seasonal allergies are triggered by things that are generally unavoidable, there is no role for allergy testing for seasonal allergies.
Get back to the basics to find relief.
If you suffer from these springtime symptoms, it is time to take action! Just don’t overcomplicate things. Treatment should start with over-the-counter medication, such as Claritin (loratadine), Zyrtec (cetirizine), or Allegra (fexofenadine). These medications can help stop itching, sneezing, and runny nose symptoms. These medications should be taken once a day and continued for the duration of allergy season.
If taking these medications makes you sleepy, take them at bedtime. You can even add a decongestant, such as Sudafed (peudoephedrine), during the day and continue this for a week at a time to further reduce sinus symptoms.
If symptoms still persist after basic treatments, try more aggressive options.
For persistent symptoms, ask one of our online doctors about a steroid nasal spray. This can target inflammation in the sinuses; symptoms of inflammation can be sinus congestion, runny nose, and cough. In extreme cases, allergy shots can be effective in decreasing allergy symptoms. They are usually given every week or month by an allergist, but be patient – it may take weeks for results.
Don’t get discouraged.
Seasonal allergies shouldn’t make you fear spring. Following these tried and true approaches recommended by our board-certified doctors will provide much-needed relief this season.