Help your child cope with seasonal allergy symptoms
Allergies can affect anyone, but they often begin after age three, peak in late childhood or adolescence, and fade as children become adults.
Symptoms often begin in early spring, depending on your region and the allergen. Antihistamines and steroid nasal sprays can provide relief, but some natural home remedies may also be worth trying. Here are some of the best seasonal allergy home treatments to try.
Keep your child away from allergy triggers
According to doctors, the best strategy for treating seasonal allergies in children is to avoid allergens first. Keep track of the pollen count in your area and take appropriate action. For example, if you know ragweed is your child’s allergy trigger, limit their time outdoors on days when the pollen count is highest.
Make your home allergy-free
Keep your windows closed, especially when the weather is hot and dry, allowing pollen to drift through the air. Be sure to start the season with a clean air conditioning filter and replace it every two to three months. Many allergens thrive in humid conditions, so use a dehumidifier to reduce the level of humidity in your home. Consider purchasing a portable high-efficiency particulate (HEPA) filter.
Pollen adhesion should be reduced
Pollen, like fine house dust, sticks to clothing, skin and almost anything it comes into contact with. Avoid hanging clothes, towels, or sheets outside to dry to avoid pollen from items your child uses.
Keep pollen away from your child’s eyes
One of the most distressing symptoms of allergies is itchy, red, watery eyes. Itching is caused by inflammation of the mucous membrane that covers the whites of the eyes and the inside of the eyelids. The solution is to keep the pollen away from your child’s face. Experts recommend that children with allergies wear sunglasses and a wide-brimmed hat. Children are constantly touching their faces, but with these accessories your child will be less likely to rub their eyes.
Use saline solution for runny nose
Older children may benefit from nasal irrigation with a saline solution, purchased or produced at home (most instructions call for mixing distilled or boiled water with non-iodized salt). This removes mucus, which helps reduce nasal congestion. Neti pots can also be very effective in relieving congestion.
Keep children away from cigarette smoke
All children with known allergies should be kept away from cigarette smoke, as it can aggravate a child’s allergy symptoms. Exposure to passive smoking in public places should also be avoided.
Use cold compresses
Does your child suffer from itchy eyes due to nasal allergies? Use a cold compress to relieve irritation and pain. Also remind your children not to rub their eyes as this will aggravate the itching and discomfort.
Make sure your child drinks plenty of water
It is essential to drink enough water every day, as blowing and sneezing can dehydrate your child. The steam from a hot shower or bath can also help relieve a stuffy nose.
Stock up on hypoallergenic foods
Any foods that produce high, natural amounts of vitamin C, zinc, vitamin D, antioxidants, and other beneficial vitamins and minerals can boost the immune system and are good choices for dealing with nasal allergies. Foods high in antioxidants include raspberries and blueberries, apples, oranges, and red peppers.
When to consult a doctor in case of allergy?
Do your child’s symptoms persist? See a doctor who can determine allergies by examining your child and reviewing their medical history. In some situations, the doctor may order blood or skin tests to help make a diagnosis.