What You Need To Know About Seasonal Allergies In Sacramento
Seasonal Allergies in Sacramento
Seasonal Allergies – If you live in Sacramento long enough, chances are that you will develop some seasonal allergies. According to the Allergy and Asthma Foundation of America the city of Sacramento ranks 99 out of 100 in their 2016 listing of Fall Allergy Capitals. While it is great that Sacramento isn’t listed first, it is still technically one of the 100 worst cities for allergies in the United States. It’s not uncommon for people who move to Sacramento from outside of the area to suddenly develop seasonal allergies. Seasonal allergies are usually triggered by grass, molds, and pollen. While rain can wash away pollen, it is a known fact that the amount of pollen can soar after it rains. Pollen levels are generally higher during the morning hours.
Avoid Seasonal Allergy Triggers
With Spring on the horizon and the abundance of rain lately, there are some important things you need to know to avoid seasonal allergy triggers.
- Weather reports and media reports often include pollen and mold information during allergy season. Pay attention so you can have an idea about whether it will be a good or bad allergy day.
- Stay indoors if possible on windy days or days with a high pollen index.
- Have yourself tested to find out which pollen you are allergic or most sensitive to. You also may simply be able to figure this out yourself.
- Pollen levels are always highest in the morning. During allergy season, it may not be uncommon for you to wake up with a stuffy nose.
- Showering, taking a bath, washing your hair, and changing your clothes after being outdoors can help reduce the amount of pollen you have close to you.
- A filter mask, particularly a NIOSH-rated 95 filter mask when outdoors and taking appropriate medication can greatly alleviate your symptoms. The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) is the United States federal agency responsible for making recommendations with regards to the prevention of work-related injury and illness. NIOSH also conducts a great deal of federal research.
Medications & Treatment Options
Over the counter medication may help you get some relief from seasonal Sacramento allergies. Some common over the counter medications for allergies include Zyrtec (cetirizine), Chlor-Trimeton (chlorpheniramine), Tavist (clemastine), Benadryl (diphenhydramine), Allergra (fexofenadine), and Claritin (loratadine). All of these medications alleviate symptoms such as itchy or watery eyes, runny nose, sneezing, or itching of the nose or throat.
Flonase (fluticasone) and Afrin are nose sprays meant to relieve seasonal and year round allergic and non-allergic symptoms such as stuffy or runny nose, itching, and sneezing. Ocuhist (pheniramine) is an eye drop. Neti-pot is also popular. With Neti-pot you add salt (sodium chloride) to water and use a special pot to pour it into one nostril. You then allow it to flow out the other nostril. This effect is supposed to clear your nasal pathways of discharge and debris. Gargling with salt may also help to relieve an itchy throat.If your symptoms cannot be managed with over the counter medication, speak to your pediatrician or physician and talk to them about possibly prescribing you a prescription medication.
Clarinex (desloratadine) and Xyzal (levocetirizine) are oral medications meant to relieve symptoms such as watery or itchy eyes, runny or itchy nose or throat, sneezing, and hives. Astelin (azelastine HCL) is a prescription nasal antihistamine spray. Flonase (fluticasone) is is a nasal spray available in an over the counter form but also comes in a prescription form. Prescription antihistamine eye drops include Patanol (olopatadine HCL)and Elestat (epinastine HCL) and Optivar (azelastine HCL). Asthma sufferers often use Pro-Air (albuterol sulfate). Pro-Air is an inhaler used to prevent and treat wheezing and shortness of breath caused by breathing problems (such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease). It is also used to prevent asthma brought on by exercise.
In more severe allergy cases, regular allergy shots administered by your health care provider are an option to help alleviate symptoms. An allergy shot is given in your upper arm. It contains a very tiny amount of whatever you’re allergic to such as dust, pollen, or mold. Giving you a shot is meant to help you develop a tolerance of whatever you’re allergic to. You will start by giving you a shot once or twice a week. They will keep increasing the amount until you reach the level of what is called a maintenance dose. Then they will give you a dose every few weeks. Your physician will increase the amount of time between each shot. The goal is for your allergy symptoms to eventually improve or even go away. You can visit one of the Pediatricians San Lucas Pediatric Clinic in Elk Grove and Natomas if you want to consult with a doctor.
Hopefully, you and your family members will be able to manage your allergies with the right medications and treatments and with the right physician. Please see our growing Directory of Pediatricians in Sacramento area. Capital Allergy & Respiratory Disease Center, a medical provider which won the Best of Sacramento 2016 award in the Best Allergy Physicians category, is also an excellent place to start. To see a 5 day forecast of the daily pollen index in your area please visit www.pollen.com.
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Dr. Jacqueline "Jax" Cheung is the owner of the award winning Jax Chronicles Blog & Adoption ministry and the Editor-In-Chief of the Elk Grove Tribune. Jax likes freelancing for Sacramento4kids and was one of their first writers. She lives in Elk Grove with her husband and 2 daughters. To follow her journey please like her Jax Chronicles Facebook page, follow her Instagram @jaxchronicles, follow her Twitter @jaxchronicles, or check out Jax Chronicles Blog & Adoption ministry.View All Posts