Natural Remedies For Spring Allergies
For allergy sufferers, springtime is a blessing and a curse. Beautiful flowers are blooming, green grass growing, leaves opening on trees and shrubs flowering after the long winter. Along with this beauty is a high pollen count, which leads to allergy symptoms for countless people.
Most allergy sufferers get little relief from antihistamines and decongestants. In fact, these medications can sometimes do more harm than good. These products are designed to block the histamine receptor and suppress the allergy symptoms. The problem is, without the runny nose or watery eyes, the allergens are delayed in leaving the body, and the body takes longer to fully cleanse. In addition, many antihistamines make people drowsy, which is seldom a good thing.
It is important to remember that open windows will compound the effects of allergies. Sufferers should not sleep with open windows. The same pollen residue that finds its way onto windowsills and dressers is also on pillows and sheets and inhaled all night long as a person sleeps.
An air purifier with HEPA filter, by contrast, can add clean, fresh air to a room, and that can be beneficial. An air conditioner works in the same way. It is just very important in either case to make sure that filters are cleaned or replaced regularly.
Histamine is released to help us deal with allergens such as pollen. It is released from cells in our blood stream called “mast cells”. When the body is exposed to an allergen, the mast cells release histamine to dilate blood vessels and cause an increase in sneezing, tears and mucus in our respiratory system. These actions help the body expel the allergen. The problem starts when the mast cells over react and release too much histamine. The mast cells keep producing more and more histamine until they overpower the anti-histamine and can stimulate the histamine receptor site. This is one reason why anti-histamine products lose their effectiveness. Ultimately this is a losing battle that leads to the allergy symptoms returning.
Instead of suppressing the body’s natural response with anti-histamine/ decongestants, working with the body to help it deal with the allergens appropriately, can lead to relief very quickly and without the unwanted side effects. Histaminum 30C is a homeopathic medicine that helps the body with the histamine reaction. It does not block the receptor sites or cause drowsiness or over-dryness. The recommended dose is five pellets dissolved under the tongue every 20 to 30 minutes until the symptoms are relieved. This medicine is good for the whole family, children through senior citizens.
There are also blends of herbs/ supplements that help stabilize the mast cells and assist with the overproduction of mucus and tears and works with the body to normalize the level of histamine instead of blocking it. Formulas that contain quercetin, Stinging Nettle leaf, bromelain and N-Acetyl-l-Cysteine have been used for years and are available in capsules or chewable tablets.
Here in New England we are fortunate that there is a homeopathic remedy available that is specifically blended for the pollens in New England that cause most of the spring time allergy problems. It works to alleviate the allergy symptoms from tree and grass pollens and is sprayed into the mouth three times a day. Local unprocessed honey has also been found to be very helpful for spring time allergies and tastes delicious.
Spring is a beautiful season, and the time to get outside and enjoy the fresh air. Don’t let spring time allergies slow you down. Try supporting the body. Assist it, instead of blocking the symptoms. This is a good way to enjoy the beautiful season of spring in New England.
Dr. Gary Kracoff is a naturopathic doctor and registered pharmacist at Johnson Compounding and Wellness Center, located at 577 Main St., Waltham. For more information, call 781-893-3870 ext. 2 or visit NaturalCompounder.com.