Springtime can be wonderful, especially if you live in an area where the winters seem to drag on. The blooming flowers, buds on the trees and the appearance of green can bring you back into a happier state of mind. However, springtime also means that the presence of pollen, dust and allergens increase, causing your to feel foggy, stuffed up and uncomfortable.
You're not the only one who is miserable.
In fact, according to the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, 16.9 million adults and 6.7 million children suffer from seasonal allergies.
Allergy symptoms can often mimic the symptoms of a common cold. How do you really know the difference and when to seek medical attention?
Typically, allergy symptoms include an itchy nose, skin or eyes, runny nose, watery eyes, and feeling congested. These symptoms also occur seasonally, especially in the spring and fall. A stuffy nose can indicate a cold, but you won't have the itchiness. Symptoms of a cold also include body aches and fever.
If you do suffer from seasonal allergies, it's important to have a plan of medications that work specifically for you. Medications that work for your friends or family won't necessarily work effectively on you.
How do you know which medication works best for your individual needs?
There are so many options available, from nasal sprays and nasal steroids to antihistamines. Some are available over the counter and some require a prescription. If you're feeling overwhelmed, don't hesitate to ask a pharmacist or your doctor for help.
What are some ways to reduce your allergy triggers?
If your allergies are extreme, make sure to look at pollen counts before heading outside. You may not like it, but you might have to skip a nice day or two and stay inside. Another helpful tip? Cover your pillows with specific allergy protector pillowcases, which will help lessen your exposure overnight.
What else do you need to know about your allergies?
Chief Medical Officer and Group Vice President of Walgreens, Dr. Harry Leider, discusses the difference between allergies and colds, home remedies for your allergies and other effective treatment options available to ease your allergy symptoms.