Is medication always necessary for allergy relief? Not quite. Although some allergies may need medicine to prevent them from worsening, others can do without. Depending on the intensity and level of discomfort brought on by allergies, you could even remedy your allergies at home.
- Essential oils — Certain essential oils such as lavender, peppermint, and tea tree oil are good for allergies thanks to their anti-inflammatory properties. Others such as lemon do an equally good job of soothing allergy symptoms by clearing up your sinuses and lessening congestion. These oils can be used alone or together; either way, they should be diluted with a carrier oil before being applied to the skin. An important thing to keep in mind is that some essential oils can induce allergies, so be sure to test a small amount first before going all in.
- Dietary changes — Sometimes cutting out or adding specific foods can make a world of difference for allergy sufferers. For instance, you could eat more of spicy foods like cayenne peppers and hot ginger to unclog your nose and clear up your nasal passages. Probiotics are another food that are recommended for allergy sufferers because of the link between good gut health and overall wellness. Conversely, you may want to ease back on dried foods and dairy products since these can cause the blood vessels within your nose to swell up, which only increases congestion. In other instances, particular foods can actually trigger and worsen allergy symptoms. Maintaining a food diary will help you keep track of what sets off your allergies. (Related: Probiotics cure peanut allergies in 80% of children and can replace vaccines for immune system stimulation.)
- Acupuncture — According to RD.com, a study demonstrated just how effective acupuncture could be. Allergy sufferers who’d been assigned to about a dozen acupuncture sessions experienced greater relief and took less antihistamines than their peers who received fake allergy treatments or none at all. Experts believe that acupuncture can reduce allergy symptoms by inhibiting the production of inflammatory immune substances. Moreover, there have been reports if improvement even after the first session, so those who are brave enough to undergo acupuncture should definitely give it a shot.
- Allergy proof your home — Prevent allergy attacks in your home by optimizing it for allergy relief. You can do this by:
- Using appliances with HEPA filters — You’d think that cleaning would ease up your allergies, but you could be doing the opposite if your vacuum doesn’t have a high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter. Vacuums without this feature can stir up any allergens that have settled on your floor and cause you to have an allergic reaction.
- Cleaning up — As soon as you arrive home after a day out, toss your clothes into the hamper and step into the shower. Don’t forget to take off your shoes before going inside. You could be covered in allergens without even realizing it, so cleaning up as soon as possible will minimize your contact. You can make it even better for yourself by taking a hot shower. The steam will help clear up your sinuses.
- Buying dust-proof mattress and pillowcase covers.
- Changing the cabin air filter of your car every year.
The next time you feel a small allergic attack coming on, don’t reach for the medicines right away. Check out other, more natural options first and save the meds for last.