Achieve enduring symptom alleviation with these 4 effective approaches
As the temperature rises and nature blooms, the annual arrival of seasonal allergies poses challenges for millions of Americans. Alongside the beauty of flowers and trees, the discomfort of coughing, sneezing, itchy eyes, and congestion tends to follow suit.
Seasonal allergies, classified by the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA) as immune reactions to foreign substances, or allergens, can arise from ingestion, inhalation, injection, or contact with allergens. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 25.7% of adults grapple with seasonal allergies, often sparked by pollens from grasses, trees, and weeds.
Rather than relying solely on momentary relief from medications like antihistamines and decongestants, which come with temporary benefits but potential drawbacks due to prolonged use, consider innovative solutions like allergy immunotherapy. These options provide longer-lasting effectiveness compared to antihistamine pills that merely mask symptoms temporarily. Sublingual immunotherapy presents an attractive choice, especially for those who prefer avoiding the inconvenience and safety concerns associated with allergy shots.
Dr. Ken Chahine, Ph.D., J.D., founding CEO of Nectar Life Sciences, highlighted, “More than 120 million people in the U.S. suffer from allergies and their related diseases, making it the most prevalent chronic illness facing our nation. Nectar’s mission is to empower consumers with breakthrough solutions that can put an end to allergies and, in turn, build healthier, more productive communities.”
To address allergy symptoms during a season that’s expected to be more intense and prolonged due to climate changes, per the AAFA, adopt these strategies for enduring symptom relief:
Identify Allergy Symptoms
Seasonal allergies frequently affect the nose, eyes, mouth, and sinuses, but their symptoms and triggers can vary individually. While classic allergy indicators include mouth roof itching, hives, and watery eyes, some symptoms can resemble illness or infection, such as sneezing, coughing, body aches, congestion, or a runny or stuffy nose. If these symptoms persist for a week or two, you might be reacting to seasonal allergens. Conversely, if you experience symptoms year-round, they could be linked to common allergens present indoors, such as dust, mold, or pet dander.
Minimize Outdoor Allergen Exposure
Reducing or eliminating exposure to triggers is the optimal way to prevent allergy symptoms. For seasonal allergies, pollen is often the primary culprit. This may involve staying indoors on dry, windy days or venturing outside later when pollen counts tend to be lower. Before heading outdoors, it’s wise to check pollen forecasts and current levels in your vicinity.
Rainfall aids in clearing pollen from the air, making rainy or cloudy days preferable for outdoor activities. Nonetheless, many outdoor pursuits are best enjoyed under sunny skies. In such cases, taking additional precautions is crucial. Consider wearing a face mask while performing tasks like mowing, gardening, or weeding, as these activities can stir up allergens. Avoid hanging laundry outside, as pollen clings to fabrics. After being outdoors, change clothes promptly and take a shower to rinse off any pollen from your skin and hair. Bringing allergens indoors, especially onto bedding, can exacerbate symptoms or prolong their duration. Moreover, closing doors and windows during high pollen counts is recommended.
Seek Sustainable Symptom Relief
While allergen avoidance and over-the-counter medications like antihistamines and decongestants may offer benefits, they may not suit everyone. For those seeking an alternative to antihistamines, allergy immunotherapy presents a promising choice. With over a century of clinical practice, allergy immunotherapy has demonstrated its potential to enhance long-term quality of life. The fundamental principle behind this treatment is exposing the body to allergens on a regular basis, gradually building immunity and reducing sensitivity, ultimately leading to fewer or no allergy symptoms.
Sublingual immunotherapy, a form of immunotherapy popular in Europe and now available in the U.S., entails taking personalized prescription drops under the tongue twice daily to achieve similar enduring relief as allergy shots. Nectar’s comprehensive allergy treatment program, conducted from the comfort of your home, initiates with an at-home allergy test. The results, coupled with your clinical history and location, guide the selection of the most suitable treatment. Personalized prescriptions are then delivered to you every three months. Over time, as your body develops tolerance to allergens, symptoms tend to wane and disappear.
“Sublingual immunotherapy allergy drops have been used and studied extensively in Europe for more than 30 years but have only recently started to gain popularity in the U.S.,” noted Dr. Shyam Joshi, MD, board-certified allergist and immunologist, and chief medical officer at Nectar Life Sciences. “Our allergy drops stand out due to higher allergen concentrations compared to other U.S. market options, supported by numerous clinical studies in both Europe and the U.S. demonstrating clinical benefits and long-term relief.”
Maintain Clean Indoor Air
To create allergen-free indoor environments, avoid opening windows in your home or car during peak pollen counts. Nevertheless, other steps can be taken to reduce indoor exposure. Using air conditioning with high-efficiency filters and adhering to regular maintenance for heating and cooling systems prove effective. Regularly dust countertops, shelves, and tables, and vacuum carpets with a HEPA filter-equipped vacuum cleaner. A dehumidifier can assist in maintaining dry indoor air and preventing mold growth. Additionally, consider installing portable air purifiers with built-in HEPA filters in frequently used rooms.
To learn more or access online resources for allergy management, like the Help Center and Learning Hub, visit MyNectar.com.