Itching and sneezing and sniffling — oh my! Spring doesn't just promise longer days and warmer weather. For many Americans, the season also guarantees unpleasant seasonal allergies. And while over-the-counter and prescription allergy medicines can help mask symptoms, they often come with downsides, like drowsiness.
By adding a few natural allergy remedies to your regular preventive plan, you may be able to find relief with less medication.
However, natural allergy remedies may help ease your discomfort without the usual side effects. Here are four easy options to consider adding to your allergy treatment routine:
When you're stuffed up, rinsing your nasal passages with a basic salt water solution can help thin nasal mucus and make it easier to breathe. You can buy commercial saline rinses at the drugstore or, according to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, & Immunology (AAAAI), make a homemade rinse by combining 3 teaspoons of iodide-free salt with 1 teaspoon of baking soda. Store this in an airtight container, and when you need relief, mix 1 teaspoon of the salt mixture with 8 ounces of lukewarm water. Use a rubber ear syringe or infant nasal bulb to gently squeeze the mixture into your nostrils.
Flustered? Finding ways to chill out could help minimize your allergy symptoms. More and more, experts are finding that stress may increase levels of inflammation in the body, making seasonal allergies harder to deal with. In fact, one recent study published by the American College of Allergy, Asthma, & Immunology (ACAAI) found that people with higher levels of emotional anxiety tend to experience more frequent allergies — and worse moods. Try a few minutes of quiet meditation before starting your day, or taking a warm, soothing bubble bath before bed.
When used along with other treatments, acupuncture can ease seasonal allergy symptoms and help allergy sufferers enjoy a higher quality of life, according to new guidelines from the American Academy of Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery. If you're interested in the traditional form of this Chinese therapy, talk with your doctor about how to incorporate acupuncture into your existing treatment plan.
The plants outside might be making you sniffle and sneeze, but keeping certain houseplants inside can actually help clear the air of the allergens floating inside your home — like dust mites and pet dander. The most effective air-cleaning plants include areca palms, lady palms, bamboo palms and dracaenas.
By adding these natural allergy remedies to your regular preventive plan, you may be able to find relief with less medication. Remember to always talk with your doctor before starting any new treatment or medication.
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