Achoo! Have you noticed yourself sneezing more, getting itchy and watery red eyes? How about a runny or blocked nose or an itchy throat after being outside? If you answered yes, chances are you may be experiencing allergies...specifically, Hay fever. Hay fever is in full swing by-mid August and will go until the first frost.
Did you know that it is called ‘Hay fever’ because people used to get symptoms of nasal congestion, runny nose, itchy eyes, and fatigue around the time that the hay was being bailed? As we now know it is not the hay that most people are allergic to but rather weed pollen. Weeds are everywhere and often difficult to avoid. They can be in your yard, parks, and often near the side of the road. Ragweed is the number one culprit in Minnesota this time of the year.
While you should try to avoid contact with weed pollen, we know it can be difficult, especially in Minnesota, so here are 6 tips to reduce your exposure to weed pollen:
Keep your house and car windows closed, especially in the evening when pollen counts are the highest.
Shower in the evening, making sure you wash your hair, if you have been outside for awhile during the day.
Watch pollen counts! You can easily check the daily forecast at the following websites: www.allergymn.com or www.pollen.com
Clean your bedding regularly, in hot water and avoid drying clothes outside.
Keep on your medications and next year start them a bit before the season starts.
Consider long term treatments such as allergen immunotherapy.
Unfortunately, allergies can occur at any age, but there are millions of people with allergies that live normal lives. Getting the right treatment can reduce irritating systems. In some cases, treatment may also help prevent other allergic conditions, such as asthma.