Some experts estimate that more than 50 million people in the United States live with seasonal allergies. If you have seasonal allergies, then you’ve probably experienced the discomfort and nuisance of a runny nose, dry throat, and nasal pressure. Unfortunately, taking allergy medications can have unwanted side effects, such as drowsiness. Instead of turning to medication this year, try these four drug-free ways to manage seasonal allergies.
Use Local Honey as a Sweetener
Using local honey as a sweetener introduces small amounts of pollen to your immune system. Although medical researchers haven’t confirmed that honey works, this approach relies on the same concept as giving patients allergy shots. Over time, your body should get used to the pollen. Through frequent use, you should see a reduction in allergic reactions. Some people report having eliminated seasonal allergies completely.
Keep in mind that you must use raw, local honey to manage seasonal allergies. Since your area has a unique pollen profile, eating pasteurized honey or honey from other locations won’t have the same effects.
Take Supplements to Improve Your Immune System
Taking the right supplements can improve your immune system so it doesn’t overreact to seasonal allergens. Useful immune-boosting supplements include vitamin C, skullcap herb, butterbur, and gamma linolenic acid (GLA).
If you have kids who don’t like to swallow pills, try giving them herbal teas to relieve their allergy symptoms. Warm tea can introduce helpful supplements to the body while soothing your child’s irritated throat. Most natural food stores carry herbal teas that can reduce symptoms. If specialty blends aren’t available, you can use green tea.
Improve Your Home’s Indoor Air Quality
You can’t control the pollen outdoors, but you can take control of your home’s indoor air quality. Air purifiers can remove 99 percent of the ultra-fine particles in your home. To get the best results, though, you have to choose an air purification system that’s properly sized for your home. An HVAC professional can help you select a system that works well for your family.
You can also use potted plants to improve indoor air quality. Some of the most useful plants for cleaning air include spider plants, dracaena, peace lilies, and aloe vera. Although these plants can’t remove as many allergens as air purifiers do, they can make a small difference in your indoor air quality.
Rinse Your Nasal Passage With a Neti Pot
When allergies give you a stuffy nose, reach for a neti pot to reduce inflammation in your nasal passages. Neti pots, which are available at most drug stores and natural food stores, use a saline solution to remove mucus and reduce inflammation. They can offer temporary relief within minutes, but you might need to use a neti pot regularly for long-lasting effects.
Make sure you sterilize your neti pot with hot water and antibacterial soap. You should also use purified or distilled water to avoid contracting an infection from tainted water.
Not everyone responds to allergy treatments in the same way. A method that eliminates one person’s symptoms might have little effect on your symptoms. After trying these four options, though, you should find a way to manage your seasonal allergies without using medications.