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Nip Spring Allergies In The Bud

February 26, 2020


This month dawns an agonizing time of year for allergy sufferers, who are sensitive to pollens, grasses, molds, smog, pollutants and dozens of other irritants. It’s nothing to sneeze at: according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), those suffering from sinusitis and rhinitis number more than 50 million nationwide and allergies are the sixth leading cause of chronic disease in America.

While seasonal allergies are very common, there are strategies that can help reduce discomfort or prevent symptoms before they start. It’s important for allergy sufferers to know what causes their allergies, how to manage their environments, which medications to take and when to visit an allergist.

What Are Allergies, Exactly?

In general, allergies are the result of an unusual reaction to substances that make contact with the nose, eyes, lungs, stomach, and skin. The result is an overreaction of the immune system that results in sneezing, wheezing, coughing and itching.

Allergic rhinitis or hay fever is characterized by airway obstruction and may be accompanied by coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath or rapid breathing, chest tightness and slight chest pain. Sinusitis is inflammation of the sinuses, which causes frontal headache and stuffiness, facial pain that worsens with bending or straining, and yellow or green discharge.

What Causes Allergies?

Substances that irritate sensitive people are called allergens. They vary by individual but may include airborne pollens of certain trees, grasses, and weeds; house dust; cat or dog dander; food or drug allergies, or poisonous substances such as poison oak.

How Is It Treated?

Luckily, there are effective medications to control symptoms available over the counter without a prescription.

  • Decongestants
  • Antihistamines
  • Topical hydrocortisone cream for insect bites and stings

Tips To Ease Your Allergy Triggers

  • If possible, stay indoors in the morning hours, when pollen levels tend to peak.
  • Keep door and car windows closed
  • Run the air conditioning indoors and use a high-efficiency HEPA filter to clean the air
  • Change your clothes after you’ve been outside
  • Shower and wash your hair at night rather than in the morning to get rid of any pollen before you go to bed
  • Wear sunglasses to shield your eyes from pollen

Adjunct Home Remedies

  • Saline nasal irrigation has been shown to have beneficial effects for both children and adults with allergic rhinitis, often referred to as hay fever.
  • Acupuncture has demonstrated positive results for seasonal rhinitis.
  • Vanderbilt University Medical Center found that probiotics (good bacteria which can be found in yogurt) improved the symptoms of seasonal allergies in 17 out of 23 studies.

Don’t use home remedies to treat severe allergic reactions or anaphylaxis. If you’re experiencing more serious symptoms, seek immediate medical attention.

Google Is Not A Doctor

While it’s tempting – and easy – to do a quick search for a “cure” on the Web, please remember that you can’t always trust what you see to be true. If you have any questions about your allergies, feel free to call Riverside Medical Clinic. The staff is happy to help.

Riverside Medical Clinic physician Brett Cherry, MD, FACAAI is a renowned specialist in the area of allergies and asthma. Get your symptoms relieved by calling Dr. Cherry at (951) 782-3681.

Riverside Medical Clinic is the largest provider of ambulatory care in the Inland Empire. With multiple locations, you’re sure to find a clinic close to you. Visit www.riversidemedicalclinic.com to see. For more information or to schedule an appointment for relief from your allergies please call Dr. Cherry at (951) 782-3681


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