Archive for June, 2016

What are grass allergies?

During warm weather, our dog likes to spend time sitting in the grass under a shade tree. Sometimes, she’ll be allergies, grass pollenoutside for hours. We suspect she loves it because often she’ll stare blankly at us when we try to coax her indoors.

Once inside, however, the licking begins. Our dog is likely allergic to grass pollen. Seasonal allergies are common in pets but symptoms flare as skin irritation instead of the sneezing and itchy, watery eyes that humans experience.

Grass allergy season is strongest in late spring and summer. The pollen can be spread by wind and when the lawn is mowed. One challenge with grass is that airborne pollen from other plants can fall onto blades of grass and slide into the ground where it can stick to shoes or paws and be brought into the house.

If you or your child plays sports outside in the grass, you’re likely to get stuck with something irritating that could make you sneeze. And the skin irritation that animals experience? Humans can react that way as well. Some people will break out in hives and, in rare cases, can even have an anaphylactic reaction.

“Grass is hard to avoid so it’s important to recognize the allergy and be prepared for symptoms,” says Ed Neuzil, Jr., ARNP-BC, PhD, FAANP and owner of the Allergy,

Sinus and Asthma Family Health Center in Lady Lake, Fla. “The best way to stay symptom-free is to avoid exposure and stay inside. However, an over-the-counter anti-histamine can provide relief if you so start to experience a runny nose, itchy eyes or skin irritation.”

Neuzil also suggested taking off your shoes once in the house so you don’t track it throughout and also consider washing your clothes and hair once inside to rinse out any irritants that may stick to you. And your pets? Wash their paws, too.

 

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Don’t let allergies ruin your summer plans.

Ready to travel open suitcase with summer equipment isolated

Be sure to pack items to help prevent and treat allergy symptoms you might encounter during summer vacation.

Before you head out for your summer vacation, you’ll want to make sure you’re prepared and protected from any allergy flare-ups and other symptoms that can make you miserable.

Few anticipate feeling lousy while on vacation or a business trip. Arming yourself is easy and you’ll be glad you are prepared. Traveling with kids? Ditto x 10.

  • Don’t leave home without it: Travelers should consider the “blooming” seasons of your destinations when making plans. Be sure to pack items that will help with relief: tissues, nasal irrigation, laundry soap to wash clothes that get particles trapped in the weave, hand sanitizer, etc.
  • Give me moisture: The dry air in-flight or visits to high altitudes can leave nasal passages parched and irritated. Swollen sinuses can cause additional discomfort due to the change in pressure during takeoff and landing. A couple of sprays of an herbal enhanced nasal spray will soothe and moisturize your nose making it easier to breath.
  • Sunlight symptoms: Some people are allergic to sunlight which can cause itchy, uncomfortable rashes. In some cases, this allergy can develop over time or can be hereditary. Medical experts suggest avoiding the sun or wear sun-protective clothing if you do go outside. Keep moisturizer and creams with corticosteroids handy. If the skin reactions are severe, be sure to visit a medical professional.

Then there are those things that can cause allergic reactions that you may not recognize. Being allergic to chlorine is not uncommon. Also, some of the fruits that are in season may share similar proteins as the weeds and grasses that trigger your seasonal allergies.

All this doesn’t mean you should only plan “Staycations,” but be aware and prepared so you can enjoy your summer adventure.