USC Pharmacist Katty Hsu, PharmD, shares five tips for easing symptoms during allergy season.
- Reduce Your Exposure to Seasonal Allergy Triggers
As we move into spring and summer, be mindful of seasonal allergy triggers such as pollen, ragweed, mold and dust mites. Try to stay indoors on dry windy days and minimize outdoor activity in the evening when pollen counts are the highest. After a day out, it helps to change out of clothes worn and shower to remove pollen from your skin and hair.
- Monitor Pollen Count
Checking pollen allergy forecasts is just as easy as viewing weather forecasts! Keep in mind that pollen forecasts do differ depending on which part of the city you are in and look out for an accurate forecast. This will help you foresee when high pollen counts are forecasted and be prepared to take allergy medications before symptoms start.
- Know Your Allergies
It’s the season for spring cleaning and keeping your environment as ideal as possible. If you’re allergic to pollen, keep your windows closed and use an air conditioner when possible. Investing in a dehumidifier is also a good idea as it keeps the air dry and can relieve allergy symptoms. If you’re allergic to dust and mold, keep your windows open and let fresh air in – it can clear out allergens at home. Also consider cleaning your floors regularly with a vacuum cleaner, preferably one with a HEPA filter.
- Over-the-Counter Medications
Several kinds of non-prescription medications are available to ease allergy symptoms such as oral antihistamines, antihistamine eye drops, decongestants, and nasal sprays. These medications work best for people with mild allergy symptoms.
- Come In and Meet your USC Pharmacist
If your symptoms continue to worsen despite doing your best to shield yourself from allergens and taking non-prescription medication, seek out a USC Pharmacist for a professional opinion. We are here to help recommend the best option to manage your allergies and can refer you to an allergist if needed.