Itchy, watery eyes, congestion, sneezing and runny nose. Are these symptoms of the common cold? Or could they be something else? Chances are, if they come on strong and all at once, they are seasonal allergies.
Seasonal allergies affect millions of people worldwide. Most people will experience them a few times a year when the season and weather is changing. Winter to spring is a very common time for seasonal allergies. The cold weather is disappearing and it is starting to get warmer. With warmer temperatures come flowers, grass, budding trees and especially pollen. Pollen is the leading allergen that is associated with seasonal allergies in the spring. It floats freely through the air and is inhaled through our mouth and nose. When the immune systems notices the foreign substance it immediately goes into attack mode and does what it can to fight off the potentially harmful substance. Even though, the pollen is not harmful on it’s own, when the body mistakes it for an allergen it can cause some uncomfortable and painful ailments.
Throughout the spring and summer people that are more sensitive to allergens will experience seasonal allergies, those who only get it with the outbreak of new plant life will next feel the symptoms when fall starts to come. Ragweed is a serious cause of seasonal allergies in the summer to fall change. When the ragweed starts to bloom people inhale the allergen much like pollen. Seasonal allergies may seem worse in the fall because the weather is getting increasingly colder and it can sometimes be more difficult to fight off the seasonal allergies symptoms. This is due to the fact that our immune system is working overtime to fight off cold and flu symptoms that come on in the colder temperatures.
Simple changes can help you through the dreadful seasonal allergies stage. Try taking an antihistamine daily to help block the allergens. Washing your hands more often will also protect you by keeping any of the potentially harmful allergens off your skin. Keeping a healthy lifestyle and drinking plenty of fluids will keep your immunity system in top shape and protect you from seasonal allergies.