Fall is that time of year when cities and suburbs come alive with blazing colors and holiday imagery. As you hunker down after an exciting summer, the changing colors of leaves will bring forth renewed hope.
But while fall can be an exciting time for many, it can be a nightmare for people prone to seasonal allergies and respiratory issues. Autumn is also notorious for its wet and windy weather, so going out unprotected could cause your allergies to flare up. Staying indoors would also be less than ideal if the air quality isn’t good.
Fortunately, there are simple measures you can take to make sure you can go through the season without compromising your health and comfort. Continue reading to know more.
How to Beat Fall Allergies
Allergies are often associated with spring and summer, but if you’re wondering why you’re still sneezing and wheezing in the fall, you may be dealing with different triggers. Ragweed is the main culprit behind fall allergies. These weeds start to release pollen in August but could continue until September and October. What’s more, ragweed pollen could travel for hundreds of miles on autumn winds. Mold is also a common issue during fall,
Stay indoors when it’s windy or wear a mask
When pollen is at its peak, it’s important to stay indoors as much as you can. But if this is unavoidable, consider wearing a face mask or allergy scarf. If indoors, keep your windows closed so pollen doesn’t enter and settle.
Keep your home dry & well-ventilated
Dust mites appear right after you turn on your heat during autumn. So it’s important not to let them settle and thrive in your home. You can do so by keeping your home’s humidity level under control. Don’t allow piles of wet leaves to settle in your lawn, either, as these can be breeding grounds for mold, which is a common fall allergy trigger.
Enrich your diet with anti-inflammatory foods
People with allergies and respiratory issues like asthma can benefit from an anti-inflammatory diet. To prevent runny nose and itchy eyes, incorporate foods and beverages proven to fight off inflammation. These include fatty fish, nuts, carrots, sweet potatoes, red grapes, coffee, dairy, and green tea.
Stock up on allergy medications
Several medications can provide relief from sneezing, coughing, runny & itchy nose, and water eyes. These include antihistamines, steroid nasal sprays, decongestants, and allergy shots. Consult your doctor or an allergist to find out which options are best for you.
Other Indoor Air Quality Problems
In addition to fall allergies, fall brings other air quality problems that can harm your respiratory health. These include the following:
While temperatures start to cool down in the fall, humidity can still be a big issue during this season. In fact, humidity levels tend to approach 100 percent in some regions. That means moisture-related problems like mold and mildew will start cropping up. These could cause respiratory problems, so it’s important to keep your home dry and well-ventilated throughout the season.
Poor air circulation
Poor air circulation can stem from several reasons, ranging from an HVAC system that’s not sized properly for your home to a tight building envelope. When your home doesn’t receive the fresh air it needs, fall allergens like dust mites will settle and thrive.
To make sure your home has sufficient air circulation, have your HVAC system checked by a reputable air-conditioning and heating service. You can also consider installing a whole-house ventilation system to make sure stale air is pushed out, and fresh air is drawn in, regardless of the season.
Strong winds can bring airborne contaminants and allergens into your home. Particles like pollen, mold spores, dust, and pet dander can aggravate your asthma or trigger your allergies. To keep these pollutants at bay, keep your house clean and HVAC filters at all times and get yourself a powerful air purifier. Be sure to replace your filters every two months to make the most of their air-cleaning capabilities.
Fall is when the weather gets confusing. It can get cold and dry in the mornings and evenings but sunny and humid in the afternoon. Exposure to these abrupt changes can confuse your body, also, and trigger allergies and sinus problems. This is why it’s important to have a smart thermostat so your HVAC system can adjust accordingly and keep your home healthy and comfortable.
Seasonal allergies can take a toll on your physical, mental, and emotional health. Keep fall allergies and asthma at bay with these tips.