Springtime is practically synonymous with allergies — the flowers are blooming, the pollen is spreading, and you, oftentimes, are sneezing up a storm. But for many, common symptoms like watery eyes and a runny nose can carry on into Summer. What gives? Well, Summer allergies are a real thing. And according to the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI), Summer allergy symptoms can be just as bad as those experienced in the Spring or Fall. No one wants to spend the best time of the year enduring annoying allergy symptoms, so here’s how to stay sniffle-free this season.
How to Find Relief For Summer Allergies
1. Go on a house mold hunt
What’s one of the leading causes of Summer allergies? It’s gross, but true: mold, according to the ACAAI. Mold can be a year-round problem, as it grows during all seasons. But allergy issues from mold fungus spores happen most often from July to early Fall — so, basically peak Summer.
Spending time around household mold may bring on your allergy symptoms, according to the Mayo Clinic. One of the best ways to prevent mold from growing in your home? Keep track of humidity levels. If your humidity is higher than 50 percent, you could be living in a breeding ground for mold — and you may want to invest in a dehumidifier.
Also, look around your house to see if you can spot — and get rid of — the stuff that fosters mold. Typical places that mold likes to grow include damp basements, shower grout, and carpets. In the future, try to keep your bathroom ventilated, avoid putting carpets in the bathroom or basement, and regularly check to make sure your basement stays dry.
2. Avoid fresh fruit (if it’s a trigger)
Talk about a Summer bummer: one of the highlights of the season — fresh fruit — can cause allergy woes for some, according to the ACAAI. Pollen-food allergy syndrome happens when your immune system recognizes the pollen found on the outside of produce, like melons, as well as on the proteins located inside the fruit or vegetable. This cross-reaction, believe it or not, can spark an allergic response.
The good news? Most people don’t have a problem eating such symptom-producing produce so long as it’s cooked, according to the ACAAI. That’s because cooking tweaks a food’s protein so that it’s no longer an immune-system trigger.
3. Take frequent showers
Even though it’s often thought of as a springtime dilemma, pollen can cause issues for allergy sufferers in the Summer, too. For example, in Chicago, grass can pollinate in May and June, and weeds typically pollinate from mid-August to the end of September. Thus, if you have a grass or weed allergy, you may have spurts of symptoms.
Your solution: the University of Chicago Medical Center suggests taking a shower as soon as you walk in your front door. This helps rinse off any residual pollen from the outside, so it doesn’t linger on your body and continue to trigger watery eyes and a runny nose.
Still having irritating nasal allergy symptoms? Try Breathe Right nasal strips. They instantly open your nose so you can breathe better, sleep better, and feel better. And what allergy sufferer doesn’t want that? Plus they’re drug-free and safe to use with any medicine.
Here’s to a perfect Summer filled with sun and sneeze-free outdoor fun.