Health & Wellness Articles

Allergy Tips for Every Season

Don't Let Symptoms Prevent You from Enjoying the Weather

Fall Allergy Tips
Fall allergies are usually caused by weeds that pollinate in the late summer and early fall. Depending on your location, you could be affected by ragweed, sagebrush and tumbleweed in the fall, as well as some trees that pollinate in cooler weather. Molds thrive in damp piles of rotting leaves, making the fall a prime time for anyone with a mold allergy.

If you have fall allergies, here are some ways to cope:
  • Avoid yard work, such as gardening and raking. This stirs up pollens and mold spores, making an allergic reaction more likely.
  • Have a professional service clean out your gutters if they are full of wet, moldy leaves.
  • Don’t over-water your houseplants as wet soil encourages mold growth.
  • Remove any visibly moldy carpet or belongings and wash any moldy areas (such as the bathroom) with a solution of one part bleach to 20 parts water.
  • If you suffer from fall pollen allergies, see the Summer Allergy Tips (above).
Winter Allergy Tips
Winter allergies are associated with sensitivities to mold and dust mites. Because people tend to spend most of their time indoors during the winter, they are exposed to these allergens around the clock.

If you suffer from winter allergies, these tips will help:
  • If you have a wood-burning fireplace, store your wood outside. Only burn logs that appear to be free of mold.
  • Keep fresh-cut trees and greens (such as Christmas trees or wreaths) outside for a few days to help reduce the amount of mold they bring into the house. Even if you use artificial trees or wreaths, they can still become moldy and dusty over the years, so clean them outside before decorating.
  • Clean all holiday decorations before putting them out for display, as they may have collected mold and dust during storage. Do this outside to prevent the spread of allergens throughout your house.
  • Wash fabric decorations in hot, soapy water before putting them on display. Protect your nose and mouth with a paper mask while washing the items, if necessary.
  • Consider purchasing an air filtration system with a HEPA (High Efficiency Particulate Air) filter to reduce the amount of dust and dust mites in your home.
  • Use a vacuum with a multi-layered filter bag and clean often to remove allergens from your carpet.
  • Remove as much carpet from your home as possible since carpet holds and traps dust and allergens. Replace carpet with smooth-surface floors (wood, tile, laminate, etc.), which are easier to clean, to reduce exposure even more.
  • Cover your mattress, box spring and pillows with zippered cases to reduce your exposure to dust mites. Wash your blankets at least every two weeks in hot water (set your water heater to 130 degrees) to kill the mites already in your bedding.
If you suffer from allergies, it's important to talk to your doctor. Lifestyle changes and other tips can only help so much, but your doctor can help you develop a treatment plan that works for you. Don't let allergies stop you from enjoying the best of every season!

Click here to to redeem your SparkPoints
  You will earn 5 SparkPoints
‹ Previous Page   Page 2 of 2  
Got a story idea? Give us a shout!

About The Author

Leanne Beattie Leanne Beattie
A freelance writer, marketing consultant and life coach, Leanne often writes about health and nutrition. See all of Leanne's articles.

x Lose 10 Pounds by April 7! Sign up with Email Sign up with Facebook
By clicking one of the above buttons, you're indicating that you have read and agree to SparkPeople's Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy and that you're at least 18 years of age.