Tag Archives: Itching

Spring And Pollen Are In The Air

Spring has sprung, and so has your post nasal drip. Birds are singing, flowers are blooming, and while most look for love, your primary goal is to find a good decongestant. While your friends talk of vacation plans, you long for antihistamines. At this rate, you’ll be the first in your crowd to attend spring break in a face mask.

Although spring is a beautiful time of year, its also the time that plants release pollen, and millions start to sneeze and sniffle. If those millions include you, here are some things you might want to know about controlling spring allergies.

Woman and child sneezing

Pollen
When it comes to springtime allergy triggers, pollens takes first place. Trees, weeds, and grasses release tiny grain of the stuff into the air, and when they get into the nose of someone who suffers from allergies, the body’s immune system gets out of control.

The body’s natural defense system sees pollen as hazardous and releases antibodies to attack it. This triggers the release of histamines into the blood. Histamines are the chemicals are the causes of the itchy eyes, runny noses, and other common allergy symptoms.

Pollen count is highest on breezy days, when the wind carries the allergens through the air, whilst rain tends to wash them away, lowering the count.

Symptoms
Watering and itching eyes, runny nose, sneezing, coughing, and dark circles around the eyes are all common indicators of allergies.

Allergy Treatments
Although there is no cure for allergies, there are medicines that can ease the symptoms.

Antihistamines work to decrease sneezing, itching, and sniffling by reducing the amount of histamine in the body.

Woman scratching skin

Decongestants shrink blood vessels in the nasal cavities to relieve swelling and congestion.

Nasal spray decongestants work on clogged nasal passageways to relieve congestion faster than oral decongestants, without many of the side effects.

Steroid Nasal sprays are a preferred treatment, but only three, Flonase, Rhinocort, and Nasacort, are available over the counter.

Eye drops can be helpful in the relief of itchy, watery eyes.

Even though many allergy remedies are available over the counter, you may want to consider consulting a doctor to make sure you choose the right one. He may be able to recommend allergy shots, prescription medication, immunotherapy tablets, or steroid nasal sprays. Be aware that some antihistamines can make you feel drowsy.

Natural Allergy Relief
If you prefer your allergy relief organic, here are some options:

Butterbar is an herb which has shown allergy relief potential. Some studies show an extract called Ze 3339 to work as well as antihistamines when it comes to allergy relief.

Woman holding head

Quercitin has been shown in research to prevent the release of histamines. It is found in apples, onions, and black tea.

Nasal Irrigation Involves a a quarter teaspoon each of salt and baking soda combined with sterile or boiled water to clear sinus passages. A squeeze bottle or neti pot can be used for nasal irrigation.

Tips For Keeping Pollen Contact Low

  • Stay indoors when pollen count is high, usually in the morning.
  • Keep windows and doors closed in the spring. An air purifier may come in handy.
  • Keep air filters in your home clean and make sure bookshelves and vents are free of pollen.
  • Wash your hair after venturing outdoors.
  • Vacuum twice weekly, wearing a mask to avoid the kick up of pollen, dust, and mold trapped in your carpet.

Let us know how you deal with the high spring pollen count! Good luck and a great symptom free spring!

Avoid the Itch With These Scents

Woman scratching her neck

Oh, the itch. That not quite defined feeling, somewhere between pain and annoyance amounting in a torture that we just can’t seem to ignore. And, aaah, the scratch. That exquisite infliction of pain that seems to momentarily quell the itch. But we have been warned against scratching, haven’t we? According to dermatologists, scratching often makes the itch worse, warning that the temporary relief it provides only make the symptoms exacerbate upon return. But what can we do? Well, if the source of our itching is a mosquito, a flea, or tick, well, bring on the bug repellant. Bug repellent is not only a cure for itching, but can also lessen the chances of contracting mosquito-borne illnesses.

But many of these bug repellents are toxic. Do we really want to spray these chemicals on ourselves and our families, and take responsibility for the possible poisoning of the environment and destroying of the ozone layer? Most insect repellents contain DEET, which, according to Dr. Joseph Mercola, is a chemical capable of melting plastics or a fishing line and causing impairments such as memory loss, seizures, nausea and vomiting. No something we want to apply liberally. However, the good doctor says,”…it is dangerously wrong…”( to assume)…”that insect repellents with DEET are the only ones that work”, so, take heart, suffering Greenies!

It seems that mosquitoes have a very keen sense of smell ( Do they have noses?) and are very attracted to the carbon dioxide we emit, but, luckily, there are some natural scents which they actually hate. So let’s clue you in.

Citronella Oil: Comes from the lemongrass plant, used in bug sprays and candles, smells lemony/ citrusy.

Peppermint Oil

Peppermint: Crush the leaves on your skin or apply peppermint oil to relieve itching, minty scent.

Rosemary and Basil: Place a few sprigs around to keep the pests away or infuse it into a lotion or spray, also can be used as food seasoning!

Eucalyptus: Can be planted in your yard and the oil can be applied to your skin.

Marigold and Lavender: Attractive and useful. Plant them in your garden for a color
explosion and pest free peace of mind.

Garlic: Not just for vampires! Cut the cloves into slivers and scatter them. You can also make a repellent spray, but, be warned, you may repel people humans as well.

Catnip

Catnip: Sorry, Snowball. Have to borrow some of yours! Sprinkling catnip is a very powerful way of repelling pests.

Another great thing about these natural repellants: you can make your own!

According to Dr. Joseph Mercola (DO), you can make repellent by mixing cinnamon leaf oil, clear vanilla oil mixed with olive oil, or catnip oil and there are tons of other recipes available on social media. Why scratch when you can go match? Keep yourself pest free and applaud yourself for being smart and helping the environment and keeping yourself and your family healthy and comfortable.