Spring Allergies: Learn How to Fight Them

Spring has arrived and with it brings allergies. Despite being one of the most beautiful seasons of the year, the truth is that it is also the time when itchy eyes, sneezing and endless packets of tissues take over in the lives of those who suffer from this problem.

ALLERGIES AND THEIR CAUSES

Allergies are our body's natural reactions to external substances. When pollen enters the system of an allergic person, the body activates cells that release histamine and other mediators, triggering the appearance of allergic reactions with very characteristic symptoms: sneezing, coughing, eye irritation, sore throat, nasal congestion, redness and itchy skin. Those who suffer from asthma may also have a constant feeling of tiredness, as well as shortness of breath, as pollen can trigger the narrowing of the airways, making it difficult for air to pass through.

According to Hospital da Luz, the allergic reactions we suffer can have a profound impact on our quality of life, as follows:

  • They affect people of all ages;
  • They are extremely common;
  • They vary in severity, from mild and transient discomfort to a life-threatening anaphylactic reaction in the most serious cases.

OTHER TYPES OF ALLERGIES

The immune system's inappropriate reaction to allergies occurs, for example, with house dust mites, food, insect bites, medicines and, unfortunately, throughout the year.

Identifying the causes of allergies – understanding, specifically, what type of substance we are allergic to – is essential to preventing attacks and having a good quality of life.

HOW TO AVOID THEM

There are effective strategies for controlling allergy symptoms, but they need to be identified early. Therefore, medical follow-up is crucial.

To avoid allergic reactions, it is important to take some simple precautions, which can help you overcome the discomfort you feel, year after year, at this time of year. Since pollen is in the air, try to limit the time you spend outdoors, especially in the morning, as the pollen count in the air is higher, as well as on windier days. Rainy days are the best for allergy sufferers as they clean pollen from the atmosphere. When leaving the house, always wear sunglasses to protect your eye area. If you travel by car, avoid having the windows open and if you travel by motorbike, wear a full-face helmet.

At home, some attention is also needed. Try to keep your home dust-free as much as possible. Vacuum sofas and mattresses regularly, wash bedding at 60 degrees Celsius, avoid having carpets, air the house only at the end of the day and keep spaces well ventilated. If you have long-haired pets, avoid sleeping with them, as pollen also accumulates in the fur of our best friends.

Take a shower at night, washing your hair well and avoiding getting pollen on your bed sheets. If you are a smoker, avoid smoking at these times or, at least, try to reduce this habit. Smoking (active or passive) increases the risk of developing allergies.

DO NOT UNDERVALUE THIS PROBLEM

Although this is a recurring situation that affects thousands of people around the world, allergies should not be underestimated. Be aware of the symptoms and consult a doctor specializing in allergies. After the diagnosis, you will know how to alleviate discomfort and improve your quality of life.

Between April 5th and 9th, from 9:00 am to 6:00 pm, the Immunoallergology medical team at Hospital da Luz will carry out free allergy screenings via video call, with prior appointment. You can make your appointment using this link or calling 217 104 532.

ESSENTIAL OILS TO HELP YOU FIGHT SYMPTOMS

In addition to anti-allergy nasal sprays and non-sedating antihistamines, there are some essential oils that can help alleviate allergy symptoms. This is the case of peppermint essential oil , which has a decongestant effect and helps relieve headaches, providing relief from the sensation of an irritated throat, unblocking the nose and calming itching. Likewise, lemon essential oil can also be a good help.

Purchase these products through this link and try putting a few drops of one of these oils in your aromatic diffuser .

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