Allergy Treatment You Can Do at Home
Nearly 50 million people in this country have some allergy, according to The American Academy of Otolaryngic Allergy. For most, that means even if they don’t have itchy eyes, a stuffy nose or irritated skin themselves, someone close to them does and is looking at for allergy treatment.
It may not occur to many of them that the first line of defense against allergies is at home. The things you do there can either avert a trip to the doctor or make the need for one clearer. How can you treat allergies at home?
What is an Allergy?
An excellent place to start is to learn what allergies are and why they happen. An allergy is an overreaction by the immune system. It detects something harmless like a food or dust mites in the air and decides it is a danger to you.
When this misunderstanding happens, the immune system creates antibodies that work like flags. The antibodies detect the substance the next time you come in contact with it and send out a warning that triggers an immune system response like swelling or itching. You may also have symptoms that mimic that of a cold.
Three Ways to Treat Allergies at Home
Once you know you have an allergy, the next step is figuring out what to do about it. Avoidance is always going to be the best option when it comes to allergies. Simply put, if you know you are allergic to peanuts, don’t eat peanut butter.
How you go about treating the problem at home depends on the type of allergy, too. You would handle skin reactions differently than a stuffy nose, for instance.
1. Sinus Rinse for Allergies and Asthma
Some of the most common allergies trigger asthma or asthma-like symptoms such as:
- Itchy eye
- Stuffy nose
- Difficulty breathing
Allergic asthma can be severe, so if in doubt, see a doctor. In the meantime, take steps to improve your symptoms at home by rinsing your sinuses with saline or salt and water. Often allergens like dust or pet dander get stuck in the mucus lining of the sinuses. Rinsing flushes them out eliminating the problem.
2. Cool Compress for Skin Reactions
Moisture is your best friend with it comes to rashes and other types of allergic skin irritations. Apply a cool compress to the affected area for 10 minutes then pat the skin dry and put on lotion. You can even turn a piece of clothing into a compress. Just wet it with cool water, ring it out and then put it on. Wear something else on over it that is tight enough to keep the cloth close to your skin.
3. Home Management
The ultimate home treatment is finding ways to reduce your exposure to an allergen. First, make sure your house is someplace allergens don’t want to live.
- Keep the temperature between 68 and 72 degrees
- Keep the humidity low
- Make sure the home has proper ventilation
Dust and vacuum daily to eliminate dust mites and pet dander that can trigger a reaction. You might even consider a home makeover that removes the carpeting. Studies show that switching to hardwood floors can eliminate 90 percent of airborne allergens.
Good allergy care starts at home, but it might not be enough. You may require allergy testing to pinpoint the problem and either allergy shots or prescription medication to manage your symptoms. Sublingual immunotherapy may also be an option. One thing is for sure; you don’t have to live with allergy symptoms. Contact BackFit for a complimentary assessment or allergy testing to get the help you need.