Breathe Deeply

Itchy eyes, runny nose, sneezing, wheezing, hives… over 50 million Americans know the miseries of allergies all too well. If you are one of the afflicted, over-the-counter remediesor prescription drugs and allergy shots may not bring you much relief. About a third of all allergy sufferers believe that medications (a) don’t help and (b) cause side effects, like dry mouth or drowsiness. Is there no relief? Actually, there are many natural ways to help tame your allergies.

You must first know approximately what causes your allergies. Is it an airborne allergy, like pollen or mold spores? Or are you allergies to animal dander or certain foods?

12 natural treatments you can use to manage your allergies.

1. The first tip is what doctors call “avoidance therapy.” It means you know what sets off your allergies and you avoid it! If you suffer from airborne allergies, close your windows and crank up the air conditioning. Minimize outdoor activities. You may have to relocate your pets if you’re allergic to animal dander. Carpeting and drapes can attract dust, so some allergy sufferers may change décor to hardwood floors and plantation shutters. If you’re allergic to certain foods, don’t eat them and, if possible, don’t even let them in the house.

2. If you have an airborne allergy, don’t ride in a car with the window open. Run the air-conditioner.

3. Investigate air filters for your home. There are

high-grade filters that you can use in your normal vent system or you may opt for a stand-alone filter. These systems can help eliminate dust and pollen.

4. Vacuum your hope with a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter.

5. If you are suffering from a bad bout of airborne allergies, avoid going outside. If you must go outside, even briefly, change clothes and take a fast shower before settling inside. A considerable amount of invisible allergens can affix themselves to your clothes (and hair).

6. Invest in a neti pot, a small “tea pot” that allows you to flush your nasal cavities with water. Best used in the shower, these devices do take a bit of practice. But neti pots are inexpensive and very effective.

7. If you have access to a steam room at your local gym or recreation center, check it out. Steam has a way of removing allergens from your skin, nasal passages, and lungs.

8. Scents make sense with aromatherapy. Aromatherapy using essential oils has been effective in loosening mucus and relieving congestion from some allergies. Eucalyptus, frankincense, juniper, lavender, lemon, rosemary or a combination of these can do the trick. Oils can be inhaled directly out of the bottle, diffused in the air, or massaged into the skin. In particular, a couple of drops of lavender oil applied several times a day on the bottoms of the feet or on the neck can help soothe the itchiness of allergies.

9. Have some honey and bee pollen from local (within a few miles of home) honeybees. Ingesting locally made honey can desensitize one to local pollens, which is especially helpful for those who suffer hay fever. Bee pollen is thought to boost the immune system. Look for raw, unfiltered honey and raw, crude pollen. But be very careful: if you are allergic to bee stings, avoid bee pollen.

10. Try some chamomile tea; it’s an herb that has been used for years to reduce allergies.

11. Get plenty of extra vitamin C which, among many other admirable qualities, is a natural antihistamine (allergy-symptom-fighter). You can take vitamin C as a tablet, but you can also get it in food. Did you know that a cup of high-quality green tea has as much vitamin C as an orange?

12. Drink more water. Summer is a great season for getting dehydrated and dehydration encourages histamine production, which, in turn, causes allergy symptoms. In fact, many allergy sufferers know from experience that drinking a glass or two more of water during allergy season has a powerful and positive impact on their symptoms.

It’s Good to Go Natural

Traditional western medical providers are increasingly recommending alternative medical treatments including natural and so-called folk remedies to their patients. One benefit of natural remedies is that they are usually safe, may have few or no side effects, and can be easily incorporated into your busy lifestyle. When you look at the list above, you can see that they also just make sense.

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