Natural Remedies You Can Use to Improve Your Allergy Symptoms

Allergies can prevent you from having a normal life. This is especially so for those who suffer from year-round allergies. It’s a miserable state to be in, then throw in the fact that you have to take toxic antihistamine drugs to suppress the symptoms. If you talk to a naturopathic doctor, you will find that there are natural, healthier alternatives to allergy treatment.

Once you have had allergy testing, you can use the following remedies to alleviate your symptoms.

SLIT

This is a natural allergy treatment that is taken sublingually (beneath the tongue). It is a form of immunotherapy, which means your body is being trained to detect these “allergens” for what they really are – harmless particles. So over time, you body stops reacting negatively to these substances, allowing you to live a normal life. This form of treatment can be obtained from a naturopathic doctor.

Saline Rinse

If you know you’re about to deal with allergy symptoms, try rinsing your nose with saline. This is nothing more than salt water. It will wash away any pollen inside that can trigger your allergies. It won’t replace medications or treatments like SLIT, but it’s a good temporary solution.

Take Fish Oil Supplements

Studies show that those who have allergic asthma can lower their levels of leukotrienes by consuming fish oil supplements daily. This is a chemical that leads to allergic reactions. Allergic asthma is asthma that flares up when you’re exposed to substances you’re allergic to.

Wear Sunglasses and Hats

The wide-brimmed hats are preferable because it can help keep pollen away from your face. The sunglasses also help to prevent pollen from getting into your eyes, preventing symptoms like watering and itchiness.

Try Butterbur

This is an herb that has bee shown to help improve allergies related to pollen. It’s also commonly used to alleviate headaches. There are studies that show it to be effective for nasal symptoms. If you don’t like taking antihistamines that cause drowsiness, then this could be a good alternative. Do note that there aren’t any studies that prove the safety of using butterbur long-term.

Acupuncture

There’s a possibility that acupuncture could help relieve hay fever. In a study that was published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, allergy sufferers were given 12 acupuncture sessions instead of antihistamines and it showed that their relief was higher. It’s not clear why acupuncture could help, but it could have something to do with it’s ability to curb inflammatory substances in your immune system.

If you go to a naturopathic doctor about your allergies, you can find out more about natural alternatives. You can also learn of other treatments, like ozone therapy and acupuncture.

How Do I Know What I Am Allergic To?

Almost everybody is allergic to something or the other, whether it is the high pollen count during spring, dust, peanuts, milk or shellfish. Some types of allergies are rare and highly specific whereas others, such as allergies to dust, pollen or allergic rhinitis (hay fever) are far more common.

It is not easy to determine exactly what you are allergic to without proper allergy testing. For example, you may find yourself sniffling every morning but without a proper test you may not be able to confirm whether it is because of house dust or dust mites on your bedding.

Allergy Testing

Allergy testing is the best way to find out what is the exact substance that you are allergic to. The most frequently performed test is the skin prick test which involves pricking the patients skin (usually the forearm or upper arm) and placing a small concentrate of multiple allergens on it. The patient then has to wait for approximately 15 minutes after which he or she should see swellings on the areas which have the allergen concentrate that they are allergic to. This test may also reveal allergies that a patient might have to a substance that they have never come in contact with. For example someone who has never come in contact with eucalyptus might be strongly allergic to it.

Two other allergy tests are the intradermal and patch test.

The intradermal test involves injecting the patient with an allergen such as bee venom and is also used in case there is speculation that a allergic reaction wasn’t shown in the skin prick test.

The patch test is also straightforward where the patient applies a ‘patch’ containing an allergen onto his or her body and keeps it on for approximately 48 hours after which the patch is removed. If the swelling or rash is still visible after 96 hours the dermatologist can then identify the allergen. The tests also display the severity of the allergy based on the size of the swelling or rash.

How Can My Allergies Be Treated?

Two of the most common ways to treat allergies are, antihistamines and immunotherapy. Antihistamines provide relief by reducing itching, sniffling and sneezing and are used when needed and can be used as a preventative measure. Immunotherapy on the other hand has more long lasting effects but also needs time to have an effect. Essentially, immunotherapy involves administering the allergen to the patient continuously till he or she build us an immunity to it. This can be done through injections (allergy shots) or sublingually where the allergen is administered under the patients tongue.