Is your car covered in yellow pollen? Have you seen pollen blowing in gusts around your neighborhood?
Along with the beautiful blossoms and blooms, spring also means the start of allergy season for millions of Americans. Increasing levels of tree pollen, which are tiny granules that travel through the air and wind, can trigger symptoms of allergic rhinitis. These symptoms may include itchy watery eyes, sneezing, runny nose, post-nasal drip, sore throat, cough, nasal congestion, and fatigue. Virginia Ear, Nose & Throat offers comprehensive evaluation and treatment for these allergies in a comfortable, safe environment.
WHAT IS A SPRING ALLERGY?
An allergy is an overreaction of the body’s immune system, often inherited, to a foreign substance when inhaled. The nose filters airborne particulates, such as seasonal pollens, and reacts to these harmless substances. Allergies can lead to chronic inflammation throughout the respiratory system.
DIAGNOSING SPRING ALLERGIES
We take a thorough history of patients’ symptoms and offer skin-testing to identify up to 40 of the most common environmental allergens, specific to Richmond, VA.
SPRING ALLERGY TREATMENT OPTIONS
Treating allergies includes avoidance measures, taking medications such as antihistamines or nasal steroid sprays, and immunotherapy such as allergy shots or drops to desensitize the immune system to allergens.
TIPS FOR AVOIDING SPRING ALLERGY POLLENS
- Keep windows closed during pollen season, particularly in bedrooms.
- Shower and wash hair, change into fresh clothing after being outdoors for extended periods of time.
- Clean pollen off pets using a damp towel when they come indoors.
- When performing yardwork, wear an N95 mask, goggles or sunglasses, and gloves.
- Remain indoors on windy days and during high pollen times of the day: dawn until 10am and dusk
- Wash bedding on hot water settings at least once weekly.
- Use nasal saline rinses following prolonged outdoor exposures.
If you or a family member wish to gain better control of your allergies, please contact Virginia ENT at 804-484-3700.