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While many of us are relieved that spring is here, there is one major setback that makes us look forward to the next season: pollen. Pollen can be a big pain to deal with because it affects our allergies, which in nature causes our bodies’ immune systems to over react to the invasive allergens. Here are some facts and tips to help deal with this seasonal inconvenience.
Types of Pollen
Because pollen is the form of reproduction for many plants, chances are you will be exposed to quite a few different types of pollen producing plants. During spring, trees are the most common type of plants that cause severe allergies. The types of trees that contribute the most to our allergies are birch, oak, ash, elm, sycamore, cypress, and maple. During the summertime, it’s mainly grass pollen that irritates us. You don’t really have to worry about flowers too much because although they do produce pollen, they pollinate via insects (such as bees) instead of realizing it into the air.
Fortunately there are many ways to weaken pollen’s malicious grip on our allergies, though some may require a conscious effort. Methods such as keeping doors and windows shut and refraining from using attic fans and other cooling methods that pull in outside air are simple enough, though they won’t be enough to effectively prevent allergy symptoms –especially if you live in an area with a high pollen count. If you have pets that are allowed outside, then it is best to limit their indoor access, such as preventing them from entering your bedrooms. Take off your shoes before walking inside your home, and if you’ve been exposed to an excess amount of pollen, then it is best for you to change your clothes. Shower or rinse off before going to bed; quite a bit of pollen can cling to your hair and skin, which can trigger your allergies while you sleep. Utilize your dehumidifier to kill the pollen spores that make it inside your home.
Fight the Symptoms!
Although it may sound unpleasant, using neti pots can do wonders for your congested nasal passages. Just flush your nostrils with a warm salt water solution to greatly reduce pollen’s irritating effects on your allergies. For scratchy or sore throats, herbal tea –or hot water with freshly squeezed lemon juice for those that don’t enjoy tea –is great for soothing. Vitamin C and citreous foods have been proven to effectively combat allergy symptoms as well.