Do you suffer from environmental allergies? You’re not alone – research tells us that allergies are the 6th leading cause of chronic illness in the U.S. with an annual cost of over $18 billion.
In fact, nasal allergies affect about 50 million people within the U.S.
Environmental allergies seem to be more problematic purely because of their nature – they surround us on a daily basis.
If you aren’t sure whether that stuffy nose or runny eyes are allergy related, then you should consider having yourself tested to find out.
Allergy testing is an important first step to an effective allergy treatment.
But do you have any habits that could be making them worse? Environmental allergies can be difficult to beat, but here are 7 habits that could be making your life more difficult.
7 Things that You’re Doing Wrong to Keep Away Environmental Allergies
Leaving doors & windows open
Admittedly, there is little better on a hot summers day than feeling a cooling fresh breeze through your home – not only is it cooling the air, but it’s also bringing the smell of summer, changing the air and generally giving you the summery feel good factor.
But along with that fresh air, comes a whole new batch of allergy-inducing particles – a constant stream of pollens and the like that will bring on your allergy.
You should resist the temptation to open the doors and windows and rely on your a/c for fresher, cleaner air.
Not changing the A/C filter
The idea behind a filter for your home’s AC system is to trap all of the pollens and allergens before they make it into your home.
However, not many people choose to change the filter that regularly, which considering an average price of around $10, just seems crazy.
Ensuring your filters are replaced monthly for Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America certified filters will make a huge difference to your allergies.
Bringing the outside in
The first thing you should do when getting home after a day out (even if that is just work) is change out of your clothes that have been outside – they will be covered in allergens and pollens that will play havoc with your environmental allergies.
This also includes your footwear.
OK, so ‘keeping clean’ is a bit of misnomer, but you should definitely wash your hair and face every night before heading to bed.
Your hair gets covered in allergens throughout the day, and once you lay your head on the pillow, so is that. And with such close contact with your skin and respiratory passages, it’s only going to make things worse.
You wear contact lenses
For many people, the thought of wearing glasses rather than contact lenses is just one big NO, but contacts can certainly make your allergens worse.
Soft contact lenses, in particular, are permeable, and therefore pollens and allergens can make their way through the barrier, only to become trapped next to your eyes. When the pollen level is up, you should consider wearing your glasses.
Rounding off a hard day at work with a nice glass of red works wonders for stress busting, but some allergy sufferers are particularly sensitive to sulfites.
A Danish study shows that women who had more than 14 drinks per week were 78% more likely to develop a stuffy nose than those that abstained.
Making your bed
There is some good news … for those of you that were made to make your bed up first thing in the morning, it’s been proven that leaving the bed to air (with the covers pulled back) is beneficial for your allergies!
To find out more about environmental allergies, treatments or our doctors, you should contact us.
One of our friendly professionals will be happy to answer any questions that you may have.