What You Need to Know About Fall Allergies

Fall Allergies

Most people get bad allergies in the spring or summer. However, for me, it seems to get a great deal worse in the fall. I used to think it was just because of the weather changing and didn’t do anything about it, until I found out that there are triggers that usually only occur in the fall. After a trip to the doctor, it was confirmed that I have fall allergies. If you find your allergy symptoms worsening in the fall, then you may deal with fall allergies as well.

Symptoms

The symptoms of allergies in the fall are the same as allergies in any other season. They include things like a runny nose, coughing, sneezing, itchy or watery eyes, itchy nose, and more. These symptoms will start or increase when your body is exposed to the allergen, so determining whether or not your allergies are from indoor or outdoor allergens will depend a lot on when your symptoms worsen.

Triggers

There are both indoor and outdoor allergies that can get worse in the fall. For me, the allergen is ragweed. Ragweed is pollen that is released beginning in August, but it often can last into September or October. Ragweed allergies are actually quite common. In fact, if you suffer from springtime allergies, then you are 75% likely to have a ragweed allergy as well. Unfortunately, ragweed pollen spreads very easily, and can actually travel hundreds of miles. Because of this, ragweed allergy sufferers can be downright miserable in the fall. There are other allergens other than ragweed that can cause an increase in symptoms come fall. For example, many people who are allergic to mold will likely notice a spike in symptoms once the weather turns cooler. The reason for this is because the piles of leaves on the ground and moist environment are a perfect breeding ground for mold. Mold can also be in damp places in your house. If you are allergic to mold, you may notice symptoms when you are both indoors and outdoors. This can make diagnosis tricky, so if you have allergy symptoms both indoors and outdoors, be sure to mention it to your doctor. Dust mites are another allergen that can cause allergy symptoms, especially when the sufferer is inside. While dust mites can be common in the summer when the weather is hot and humid, they can get released into the air when you first begin using your heater when the weather cools down. Because of this, you may notice an increase in your symptoms during the fall.

Diagnosis

If you think you are allergic to one of the allergens mentioned above, the first thing you should do is talk to your doctor. If your doctor suspects that you are suffering from allergies, then he will likely do some testing to confirm the diagnosis. My doctor did a skin test to see how I would react to these allergens. He put a small amount of a few different allergens on my back, and then he pricked the skin underneath. When the part of my skin that had ragweed turned into what felt like a bug bite, he was able to confirm that I had an allergy to ragweed. Sometimes, doctors will do a blood test to help confirm it, however this is not always the case.

Treatment

Once your diagnosis has been confirmed, there are several things you can do to help with your symptoms. Your doctor may prescribe an allergy medicine, or he may recommend natural treatments available over the counter. The medicine that is best for you depends on what your symptoms are. For example, someone that has a stuffy or runny nose from allergies may benefit from a nasal spray. Someone who feels itchy and can’t stop sneezing will likely feel relief from taking an antihistamine. Just a warning, if you are like me, then antihistamines will make you very sleepy. A decongestant can help people with a runny nose, while someone with itchy or watery eyes may feel better with eye drops. Be sure to talk to your doctor about which medicines to use and how to take them, even if it is over the counter. Overuse of some of these can make your allergies worse, and some of these medicines may be ineffective depending on your symptoms.

Prevention

Of course, like most other ailments, the best thing you can do is try to prevent symptoms from happening in the first place. While this may not always be possible, there are things you can do to help keep allergy reactions to a minimum. For example, I make sure that my windows stay shut, especially in the morning. Usually, pollen is at its peak in the morning, but this may not always be the case. Even if it’s nice outside, I keep my windows shut to keep the pollen from getting into my house. If you are allergic to mold, you may want to wear a mask when raking the leaves or doing yard work. This way, you are less likely to breathe in the mold. An air filter can help substantially if you suffer from indoor allergies. They can reduce the amount in the air in your home, which can lead to a significant decrease in symptoms. Using a dehumidifier in your room is also a good idea, as can using a HEPA filter. When the time has come to turn on your heater for the first time, be sure to clean the filter and make sure everything in the heating system is clean before turning it on (find more tips at https://oakislandac.com/san-marcos/).

Suffering from allergies can be downright miserable. Sometimes, I feel like allergies make me feel worse than a bad cold would. Because of this, I do everything I can to prevent them whenever possible. I have noticed quite the difference by implementing some of the prevention tips mentioned above. In addition, I make sure to have my allergy medicine with me and take it daily, to help with the times that I cannot help but come into contact with ragweed. Be sure to speak with your doctor if you notice a change or worsening in your symptoms, so that they can help you figure out what’s going on.

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