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Coming down with a cold or the flu is the worst. Having to deal with allergies on top of them is insufferable during the cold winter months. If you’re finding you’re perpetually stuffed up, have itchy eyes, or feel like your head’s going to implode – you may not have a cold, but winter allergies instead. Rather than viruses, allergens such as mold, dust and pet dander are to blame. So instead of getting outside into the cold to avoid them, here are the following things you should do to protect yourself from winter allergies, so you can feel healthier during winter’s miserably cold months.
Clean Your Bedroom
Allergist and immunologist Clifford Bassett, M.D., says the bedroom is the main hiding spot for dust mites. If you’re finding yourself to constantly be waking up feeling stuffy, your bedding could be the cause. Make sure to regularly wash all covers and coverings, but also, it’s in your best interest to buy pillows and mattresses that say they are “impervious” to dust mites and allergens.
Filter Things Out
Make sure your home’s air filter is cleaned and replaced regularly. A high-efficiency (HEPA) filter can substantially improve one’s allergy symptoms. Also, if you own your home, it might be worth your while to see if your heating and cooling system can also be outfitted with HEPA filters.
Dry indoor air can make a person’s allergies much worse. It causes your nasal passages to dry out, irritating and inflaming them so that even the slightest inhale of an allergen can cause a reaction. While humidifying can cause mold to grow, the solution is to use both a humidifier – and a hygrometer – which will allow you to measure and control the amount of moisture in the air.
Get A Dog Groomer
To protect yourself against pet dander, your cat or dog will need to be bathed and brushed frequently. However, doing it yourself only puts you in the line of fire. If you suffer from even the mildest of pet allergies, invest in a quality pet groomer and save yourself the trouble.
Spray Some Saline
Winter will dry out your nostrils. So to keep them moist, use a couple of sprays of Saline a day. Best to use before going to bed, and when waking up.
Most people vacuum once a week. If even. If you’re only going to vacuum that amount, make sure your vacuum is equipped with a HEPA filter. Otherwise, vacuum at least twice a week.
Call The Exterminator
Just when you thought cockroaches were bad enough, apparently, they can trigger asthmatic symptoms in allergy sufferers. One study even found that out of 831 homes, two-thirds contained high levels of cockroach allergens. So if you live in an old home or apartment, you may want to have an exterminator make a house call.
Pop Some Allergy Pills
You should always keep some allergy pills on hand, whether you have allergies or not. You never know when you could develop one. However, if you already do suffer with existing allergies, as a preventative measure, there’s nothing wrong with popping an allergy pill each morning to keep you feeling less stuffed up and itchy.