Posts Tagged ‘allergies’

Planning your Spring Garden? Make sure it’s sneeze-proof.

For many, planting a garden is a rite of spring. The bright colors from the blooms are welcome change after a dark, dreary winter.

pollen, allergic triggers, spring allergies, sneezing, sniffles

You can plant a beautiful yet sneeze-less spring garden .

What you decide to plant could contribute to another seasonal occurrence – allergies. Pollen from certain plants often triggers the sniffles, sneezing and itchy eyes and nose associated with spring allergies.

Good news! You can still enjoy beautiful color in your yard with flowers, trees and grasses that produce little or no pollen, thereby eliminating potential for inhaling particles that cause discomfort.

Avoid adding wind-pollinated plants to your garden because their pollen becomes airborne and subsequently inhaled, irritating airways. According to the University of Georgia Cooperative Extension, plants pollinated by insects and animals tend to have large, sticky pollen grains that are not airborne and pose less problem to allergy sufferers. In fact, most colorful flowers are insect-pollinated.

Thomas Ogren, author of The Allergy-Free Gardening, says that because the male part of the plant produces pollen, try to plant female versions which may be called “seedless” or fruitless.” Ogren explains this better in a radio interview.

The American Academy of Allergy Asthma and Immunology has identified certain flowers, trees and grasses that are better for people who suffer from outdoor allergies. These include:

  • Cactus
  • Dahlia
  • Daisy
  • Geranium
  • Hibiscus
  • Iris
  • Magnolia
  • Roses
  • Snapdragon
  • Tulips

Avoid planting these highly-allergenic trees and grasses:

  • Ash
  • Cedar
  • Cottonwood
  • Maple
  • Oak
  • Johnson grass
  • Rye grass
  • Timothy grass

 

 

 

Help for Holiday Allergies

Christmas tree allergies, mold, conifer trees, fragrance allergies, sniffles, sneezing

Mold spores may be the other “gifts” found under your Christmas tree.

You may be miserable this holiday season but not necessarily because of stress or visiting family.

According to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, many people experience sniffling, itchy eyes and nose, and shortness of breath due to a Christmas tree allergy.

Some Conifer trees carry mold spores that trigger allergic reactions or even asthma.

If you and your family prefer a real tree over an artificial one, then try putting the tree in the garage or an enclosed porch for several days until it dries. Give it a good shake outside before bringing it in to decorate.

For many, it is a post-holiday annual tradition to store away holiday decorations. Wipe everything thoroughly as you unpack items from storage before displaying the decorations in your home so dust won’t irritate your sinuses.

We traditionally associate certain fragrances with the holidays and will use artificial sprays and candles to contribute to the holiday spirit. But those strong smells can also trigger sneezing and sniffles so you might want to tone them down a little, especially if your holiday guests seem uncomfortable.

Of course, eliminating exposure to these potential triggers is the best way to avoid allergic reactions, but that’s not very festive. A good saline rinse used after the exposure to airborne pollutants will help get rid of the irritants in your nose.

Using an herbal-enhanced nasal spray before you are potentially exposed to the airborne irritants at a holiday party will even help protect your sinuses by moisturizing passages so that you can focus on holiday cheer instead of holiday achoo.

Sniffling and sneezing? You might blame your parents.

Do your sinuses flare up at the slightest exposure to pollen, dust or mold spores? It is likely due to an allergic reaction where the human immune system overreacts to a foreign substance that is eaten, inhaled, injected or touched.

The immune reaction may cause symptoms such as coughing, sneezing, itchy eyes, runny nose and a scratchy throat. In severe cases, inhaling these allergens can cause asthma attacks, difficulty breathing or worse.

If this diagnosis is familiar to you, there is a good possibility that one or both of your parents share the same problem.

According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, allergies have a genetic component. In fact, if only one parent has allergies of any type, the likelihood of each child having an allergy is 1 in 3.  If both parents have allergies, the likelihood of the children having the allergies increases to 7 in 10.

“If your allergies are severe,” said Ed Neuzil, ARNP, MSN, PhD and founder of Dr. Neuzil’s Irrigator nasal cleansing spray. “Then you’ll want to visit your medical practitioner and try to determine what allergens prompt your discomfort. Once you find out, it will be important to try to avoid exposure to those pollutants as much as possible.”

allergies, sneezing, saline spray, non-medicated, snifflesWhat is that old saying? “A family that sticks together, sniffles together?”

41 Reasons to Sneeze

Sometimes it seems as though we never get a break. For many Americans, the summer has been just an extension of the spring allergy season. Plus, some parts of the country experienced heavy rain which can lead to production of mold spores; yet another sinus aggravator.

Fall is right around the corner and environmental experts are now saying that the Ragweed season will be especially intense, especially in the East.

Ragweeds are flowering plants in the sunflower family.  There are 41 species worldwide (15 in the U.S.) and they are big-time pollen producers.

ragweed, pollen, airborne irritants, fall allergy season,

These pretty flowers can produce one billion pollen particles every day.

It used to be that North America’s high mountain and desert areas had little or no ragweed growth and thus were refuges for hay fever sufferers. But guess what? Each ragweed plant can produce a billion pollen grains every day. That pollen becomes airborne and can travel hundreds of miles.

In fact, ragweed thrives on carbon dioxide so the issue of Global Warming plays a role in spreading this pollen source. Ragweed pollen is pretty much everywhere in the United States and moving to another region will likely not give you any relief.

So what can you do? According to Ed Neuzil, ARNP, PhD and owner of Allergy, Sinus and Asthma Family Health Center in Lady Lake Florida, you should do your best to avoid exposure:

  1.  Check pollen counts in your area.
  2. Try to stay indoors on windy days.
  3. If you do go outside, remove your clothing and launder it immediately after coming inside and take a shower. Be sure to rinse your nose, eyes and hair of pollen.
  4. An herbal-enhanced saline spray can help get rid of airborne irritants that you inhale while outside.

Still think you’re immune? According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of American, 75 percent of Americans are allergic to ragweed. By late summer, 10 to 20 percent of the population suffers from symptoms such as sneezing, stuffy, itchy and runny noses.

The good news is that the ragweed plant only lives one season and you can look for comfort and relief when the frost sets in and kills the plant.