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  • Writer's pictureCheryl Penna

Understanding Seasonal Allergies

As we transition into the beautiful seasons of spring and summer, many of us are excited to enjoy the great outdoors, bask in the sunshine, and revel in the vibrant blooms. However, for some, this time of year brings a different kind of "bloom" – seasonal allergies. Don't worry; we've got you covered! In this newsletter, we'll explore natural approaches to managing those pesky allergies so you can fully embrace the season ahead.

Understanding Seasonal Allergies

Before we dive into natural remedies, let's briefly understand what causes those itchy eyes, runny noses, and sneezing fits. Seasonal allergies, also known as hay fever or allergic rhinitis, occur when your immune system overreacts to allergens like pollen, mould spores, or grass.

These allergens trigger a release of histamines in your body, leading to allergy symptoms. During this time, many plants release pollen into the air as part of their reproductive process. Some of the most common culprits include grasses like Ryegrass and Bermuda grass, as well as various species of trees and weeds.

The type and severity of hayfever symptoms can vary depending on the specific allergens present in your area. Coastal regions may experience a milder hayfever season, while inland areas with more vegetation may have more intense symptoms.

Managing Hay-Fever Symptoms

Allergen Avoidance: To minimize hay-fever symptoms, try to avoid exposure to pollen as much as possible. Keep windows closed during peak pollen times, use air purifiers with HEPA filters in your home, and avoid outdoor activities on windy days when pollen is more likely to be in the air.

Medications: Short term use of over-the-counter antihistamines, and nasal sprays can provide acute relief from hayfever symptoms but are not recommended for long-term use due to the side effects they cause. My favorite nasal spray that I recommend is called 'EZE Allergy", available from most chemists. It provides relief within 15mins for 12hrs and contains no chemical preservatives like most of the other spays available.

Allergy Shots: For severe hayfever sufferers, allergen immunotherapy, or allergy shots, can be an effective long-term solution to reduce sensitivity to allergens.

Natural Remedies: Some people find relief from hayfever symptoms through natural remedies like saline nasal rinses, local honey consumption, or acupuncture. While these methods may not work for everyone, they are worth exploring.

1. Local Honey:

Start your day with a spoonful of local honey! This age-old remedy may help your body adapt to local pollen over time. By introducing small amounts of allergens into your system through honey, you can build a natural immunity. Just make sure it's raw, local and unfiltered for the best results.

2. Nasal Rinsing:

A saline nasal rinse can be a game-changer for allergy sufferers. Use a neti pot or saline spray to clear out irritants, allergens, and mucus from your nasal passages. This simple practice can offer instant relief and reduce the severity of symptoms.

3. Quercetin-Rich Foods:

Quercetin is a natural antioxidant found in foods like apples, onions, and citrus fruits. It possesses anti-inflammatory properties that can help alleviate allergy symptoms. Incorporate these foods into your diet to potentially reduce your allergic response.

4. Essential Oils:

Certain essential oils, like lavender, peppermint, and eucalyptus, have anti-inflammatory and antihistamine properties. Diffusing these oils at home or applying them topically can provide relief from allergy symptoms. Always dilute essential oils and follow safety guidelines.

5. Herbal Teas:

Sipping on herbal teas such as chamomile, ginger, or peppermint can help soothe irritated throats and reduce congestion. These teas have natural anti-inflammatory and antihistamine properties that can ease allergy discomfort.

6. Herbal Extracts:

We have a whole range of herbal remedies that have shown promise in reducing allergy symptoms. They work as a natural antihistamine. These include Albizzia, Baical skullcap, Perilla, Nettle leaf and are often combined with liver support and immune enhancing herbal remedies. However, consult with a healthcare professional before adding any supplements to your routine.

7. Homeopathic Formulas:

The traditional use of homeopathic formulations alongside herbal and nutritional support works well in reducing allergy and hayfever symptoms. My favorite formula for this time of the year is Baurer Hayplex.

8. Clean Living Spaces:

Keep your living environment allergy-friendly by regularly cleaning, vacuuming, and dusting. Consider using a HEPA air purifier to filter out allergens. Don't forget to wash your bedding frequently in hot water.

9. Allergy-Friendly Gardening:

If you love gardening, choose low-allergen plants for your outdoor space, and wear a mask while gardening to reduce allergen exposure. Also, shower and change your clothes after gardening to minimize pollen transfer.

10. Stay Hydrated and Eat Nutritious Meals:

Proper hydration and a balanced diet can boost your immune system, making it better equipped to handle allergens. Stay hydrated and load up on fruits and vegetables rich in vitamins and antioxidants.

Remember that natural remedies may work differently for each person. It's essential to consult with a healthcare professional before starting any new treatment or making significant changes to your routine, especially if you have severe allergies.

With these natural approaches to allergy relief, you can enjoy the seasons to the fullest, even if you're prone to allergies. Here's to a sneeze-free and symptom-free spring and summer ahead!


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