Here comes your favorite time of year! Spring in Madison, Alabama brings warmer weather without as much humidity in the summer. But it also brings on the runny nose, itchy eyes, scratchy throat, and endless sneezing with all of those spring allergies in tow. Yes, there are colorful flowers starting to bloom, trees are sprouting new growth, and all we want to do is be outside. But alas, it’s brutal out there. So as we approach this lovely season and head to the drugstore, let’s be aware of commonly misunderstood facts and myths about spring allergies.
If symptoms of allergies are affecting your daily life, call Madison Medical Associates to schedule your appointment today.
Don’t Take Spring Allergy Medications Until Symptoms Start
This fallacy does nothing but put many people behind in the race to beat spring allergies. Once you see yellow pollen all over our cars, it’s really too late. You have lost the opportunity to get ahead of the misery.
The spring cycle really starts well before we see pollen, often in late February and early March, especially in Alabama and the rest of the southern half of the United States. Start by being proactive taking your medications early and you’ll be in for a more enjoyable spring.
Daily Spring Allergy Medications Are Unnecessary
This commonly misunderstood fact about spring allergies is one heard in many physician offices. The fact is, you should never wait to start, nor stop, allergy medications. It’s important to take your medications every day so that you can maximize their effect. Taking these daily doses gives the medicine time to treat and prevent any new allergy symptoms. Otherwise you are always playing “catch up.”
Spring Flowers Are the Culprit
If you believe that, you’re in for a surprise. It’s not the flowers that are giving you that runny nose. Think instead of all the trees and the spring winds that carry pollen in the air. In fact, flowering trees like cherry, pear, and dogwood are not the offenders either. It happens to be trees like maple, oak, and birch that are the real culprits, and they have no flowers.
A quick tip: if it’s a really windy day, wear wraparound sunglasses. This will help keep the pollen out of your eyes, which will limit redness and itchiness.
An OTC Nasal Spray Is All I Need to Get Through Spring Allergy Season
Non-prescription or OTC (over the counter) decongestant nasal sprays can become problematic when used consistently over time. They can irritate the lining of the nose and can lead to rebound congestion. They also become ineffective after about three days.
Topical nasal steroids are an excellent choice if you are looking to reduce inflammation. There are differences among these many types medications, so not every product will be best suited for you and your spring allergies. Talk to your doctor to determine which will be ideal for you.
Children Are Too Young to Take Allergy Medications
Some children have a terrible time with allergies in general. They can begin to have symptoms as early as two years old. The best course of action is to first find out what they are allergic to, and then the proper medications can be prescribed.
Since I Didn’t Have Allergies as a Kid, I Will Never Get Them
Sorry, but this is another one of those commonly misunderstood facts about spring allergies and allergies in general. Our bodies are always changing and reacting to different stimuli. So, in fact, you can begin to have spring allergies at age 40.
The opposite is also true. If you suffered with allergies as a kid, they may disappear as you get older with no particular rhyme or reason.
If you are struggling with allergies, or suspect that you may have some sort of spring allergies, please talk to your physician at Madison Medical Associates about which medications and other treatment options are right for you.