-- Robert Preidt
SATURDAY, March 22, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Many people are
happy to see the end of this long, cold winter, but those with
pollen allergies might not greet spring with open arms.
There are, however, a number of things people with pollen
allergies -- also called hay fever -- can do to reduce or prevent
symptoms, said Dr. Luz Fonacier, head of the allergy section at
Winthrop-University Hospital in Mineola, N.Y.
It's important to know what you're allergic to so you can avoid
those triggers, Fonacier said. An allergist can identify the things
that cause allergy symptoms such as sneezing, runny nose and itchy
Some other things you can do: Monitor pollen and mold counts,
and stay inside when they're high. After working or playing
outdoors, take a shower, wash your hair and change your clothes.
Keep windows and doors shut at home and in your car during allergy
season. Use air conditioning, which cleans the air.
Also, try to avoid mowing the lawn or raking leaves. If you have
to do these chores, it might be a good idea to wear a mask,
Fonacier suggested in a hospital news release.
Take allergy medications as prescribed and start using them
before symptoms begin. Be careful when using over-the-counter
allergy medications because they can cause sleep and thinking
Allergy vaccinations are another option. They slowly introduce
your body to allergens so it learns to tolerate them rather than
triggering an allergic reaction. These vaccinations can reduce
symptoms of many allergies, prevent the development of new
allergies and, in children, stop allergies from progressing to
asthma, Fonacier said.
Moving to another area of the country isn't likely to help. Many
types of pollen and molds are found across the nation, and you
might encounter new allergy triggers if you move to a different
The American Academy of Family Physicians has more about
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