Seasonal allergies, also known as hay fever or allergic rhinitis, are allergy symptoms that only arise during certain times of the year. This form of allergy is caused by chemical histamines’ release to fight off outdoor allergens such as pollen, pet dander, and dust mites. These elements are airborne and are usually in abundance during the spring and summertime. Here is how seasonal allergies affect your body and how to prevent them.
Causes of seasonal allergies
The immune system has the task of fighting off foreign elements that may be harmful to your body’s health. However, in some individuals, the immune system mistakes some harmless elements as “invaders” and tries to fight them off. It releases histamines to do this. This causes the body to react, showing what we know to be an allergic reaction. For individuals experiencing seasonal allergies, the various seasons may trigger the reactions.
During the springtime, the blooming and blossoming of flowers and trees cause a high pollen concentration in the air. In summer, hay fever occurs due to grass and weeds. Pet dander is also a culprit of seasonal allergies in summer as pets shed more in the warmer months.
Signs and symptoms of seasonal allergies
There are several symptoms of seasonal allergies. These range from mild to severe. Mild and moderate symptoms include:
- Itchy and watery eyes
- Irritated throat
- Nasal congestion
- Runny nose
- Ear blockage
- Nasal drip
More severe symptoms include:
- Shortness of breath
- Mental confusion
- Asthma attack
It can be relatively easy to detect if you are experiencing seasonal allergies based on the symptoms. However, you can also get the opinion of a doctor, an Ear, Neck, and Throat specialist, or an allergist to determine whether you do have seasonal allergies through a series of tests. This may involve skin tests that require a small amount of the suspected allergen to be injected into the body to monitor the body’s reaction.
Treatment of seasonal allergies
Fortunately, there are several ways you can treat and relieve yourself of your seasonal allergies. Antihistamines such as Fexofenadine tablets help your body reduce the effects of the body’s overproduction of histamines. You can buy these medications over-the-counter without a doctor’s prescription.
The release of chemical histamines also creates the buildup of mucus in the nasal passage and cavities. This causes nasal congestion, which can be pretty uncomfortable. Using nasal sprays such as nasal steroid sprays, nasal corticosteroids, and nasal decongestants effectively ease the discomfort. Pain relievers such as paracetamol and ibuprofen are also effective in relieving earaches, headaches, and discomfort.
Be sure to take more preventive measures during the seasons that allergens are more prominent. Avoid being around flowers, trees, and grass. When you have been out, be sure to wash your hands thoroughly to clean off any allergens you may have picked up. Doing this prevents elements such as pollen, pet dander, and dust mites from entering your body to create these allergic reactions.