Spring is a beautiful time here in the pacific northwest. After months of grey we get to see the beginnings of amazing natural wonders that make the rain worth enduring.
For many people, however, spring can be a time of discomfort as seasonal allergies start to kick in. We feel for you, and understand that over the counter allergy medications can have unwanted side effects like drowsiness and fatigue. So we’ve put together a list of more natural allergy treatments that may be helpful for you in this blooming time:
1. Neti Pot (or other sinus irrigation systems)
I’ll be the first to admit that the Neti Pot is NOT my favorite option for clearing my sinuses. It’s not comfortable or enjoyable…but man, does it work. When sinus pain and pressure are the bulk of your symptoms, this simple system can clear them out within minutes. It can be used when allergies are at their worst, or routinely to keep sinus passages clear and healthy all year long.
If you aren’t familiar with sinus irrigation systems, they run purified salt water through the actual sinus passages to clean out any gunk or infection that might be lingering. This cannot eliminate your allergies, but it can reduce the intensity of sinus pain and pressure.
Neti Pots can be found at most drugstores and on Amazon for around $10-20. Make sure it comes with the salt!
As Mobility Plus we like to acknowledge all the forms of treatment available to our patients. You may have heard of using acupuncture for pain or stress, but did you know it can help with allergies as well?
You have to consult your acupuncturist to get the correct description of exactly how it works for allergy relief. We’ve just heard positive outcomes enough times to recognize the benefits of this alternative therapy approach.
3. Local Honey
The concept: Ingest honey made by local bees who create pollen from the exact things that cause your allergies. It’s like a flu shot, over a few months you allow your body to build up an exposure and therefore a resistance to the allergen. The exact science is still out on this topic as it’s hard to study precisely. It’s worth a shot, though, if it can lessen the months of misery!
There are plenty of local honey farmers who know exactly what pollen created their honey, they should be able to help you find the right batch.
4. Anti-inflammatory diet
The biggest factor in allergy severity is inflammation. Sinus inflammation is a large contributor of pain and discomfort, and the immune system response is only exaggerated by whole body inflammation.
The simplest way to approach overall inflammation control is to avoid inflammatory foods such as:
Focusing on whole, raw foods with plenty of fresh vegetables and fruits will increase your vitamin and mineral intake to help your system work as efficiently as possible to fight inflammation.
What? That’s not a treatment!
Au contraire. Rest is the ultimate treatment for anything that ails you! During deep sleep your body uses all of its resources toward regeneration and healing. If you’re chronically low on sleep (especially deep sleep) you are chronically shorting your body’s healing ability.
So if your allergies are making you more tired than usual, listening to your body and getting some quality sleep might be just what the doctor ordered!
One thing that irritates nasal passages is dry, cold air. In the PNW we’re no strangers to dry air, especially during the cold winter months. But keeping your bedroom cooler (60-65 degrees) is ideal for sleep, so what can you do?
Using a humidifier can be an easy answer: it puts more moisture into the air naturally. You can use it while you sleep or when you’re awake, preferably in the room you spend most of your time in.
You can also use essential oils in the humidifier to promote relaxation, energy, or just a nice smell!
7. Vitamin D
We were always told that Vitamin C helps boost our immune system. Well, it turns out that there is exactly ZERO support to this claim! The real solution lies in Vitamin D, it supports our immune system working properly. Vitamin D can be created naturally in our bodies with the intake of sunlight, so it’s no surprise that colds tend to crop up during the dark winter months.
Because Vitamin D supports overall immune system health, it can’t hurt to increase your intake as you battle evil allergens.
Supplementing Vitamin D is safe and effective. You can get D3 supplements at most major grocery, drug, and supplement stores. Doses vary, but somewhere between 5,000-10,000mg daily is ideal.
*Vitamin D is a fat soluble vitamin, so it would be a good idea to take a fish oil supplement with it!
The Mobility Plus team hopes these tips help you mediate the effects of seasonal allergies. For more information or methods check out these websites:
As always, please let us know if you have any questions! We hope you enjoy the new season!