Have you been experiencing the seasonal cacophony of red eyes, runny nose, sneezing, sinus pressure and congestion, scratchy throat, and fatigue? Rest assured, you’re not alone!
According to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology:
- Roughly 7.8% of people 18 and over in the U.S. have hay fever.
- Worldwide, allergic rhinitis affects between 10% and 30 % of the population.
According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, “Allergy is characterized by an overreaction of the human immune system to a foreign protein substance (“allergen”) that is eaten, breathed into the lungs, injected or touched. This immune overreaction can result in symptoms such as coughing, sneezing, itchy eyes, runny nose and scratchy throat. In severe cases it can also result in rashes, hives, lower blood pressure, difficulty breathing, asthma attacks, and even death.”
Seasonal Allergies And Acupuncture
Many of my patients are coming in, looking for relief from their allergies. Especially now, as our lovely metropolitan area pollinates and blooms from Spring. Some of my patients use antihistamine medications and find them effective (sometimes too effective, that they are suffering from the side effects they can cause), while others have become disappointed with medications, and find that none of their prescriptions have done the trick.
Acupuncture can help bring relief from allergies by:
- Addressing the itchy eyes, stuffiness, headaches and fatigue, among other symptoms.
- Bringing equilibrium to the body.
On a related note, did you know that Acupuncture:
- Has specific Ear Acupuncture/Auricular points, one that’s called “Allergy Point” and another called “Asthma/Histamine Point”?
- Reduces inflammation in the nasal tissues, and other areas in the head where you may experience pressure during an allergy attack?
- Boosts the immune system, or as we Chinese Medicine practitioners call it, Wei Qi?
- Calms the stress response in your nervous system, so that you can more manageably deal with the stress of your allergies? There are many Acupuncture points on the body and ear that reboot the sympathetic nervous system.
It’s all true!
What are 7 things you can do right now to get relief from seasonal allergies?:
- Receive an Acupuncture treatment – Reduce your symptoms, and tap into your body’s innate ability to heal and respond more adequately to histamine responses. As icing on the cake, you get to de-stress, as well!
- Irrigate your nasal passages with a Neti Pot – I swear by the Neti Pot! I don’t personally experience seasonal allergies, but when I have a cold, and am experiencing a clogged up, runny nose, I turn to my Neti Pot to flush out the irritants in the nasal passages. You’d be amazed what’s going on up there and needs to be flushed out! I mentioned it in this post. You can get it, as well as the Neti Pot salt, at your local health food store.
- Apply chamomile tea compresses – Chamomile is an antioxidant and antihistamine, and acts effectively as an anti-inflammatory agent. Enjoy a cup of chamomile tea during the day, place the tea bags in the fridge for a few minutes, and viola! Instant cooling eye compresses for swollen, irritated, red eyes. One of my patients tried this the other day, and loved it!
- Have a cup of green tea – Researchers in Japan identified a compound in green tea that, in laboratory tests, blocks a key cell receptor involved in producing an allergic response. And, if you’re working to detoxify your system, increase your metabolism, and get some antioxidants, you have multiple benefits from drinking green tea!
- Take nettle infusions – Nettle has been used for centuries to treat allergy symptoms, since it contains biologically active compounds that reduce inflammation. Infusions are a large portion of dried herb steeped for many hours. I am crazy about infusions, especially nettle, since not only does it address allergies, but builds the kidneys, helps the adrenals, balances hormones, as well as a lot of other things! Learn how to make your own nettle infusions here.
- Enjoy chrysanthemum flower tea – My loved ones enjoy boiling a pot of this almost daily nowadays, to address the eye irritation, sinus congestion, and to help their immune system feel supported. As an aside, this tea is great for those who tend to be irritable, and is ideal to drink during cold and flu season, too. Note: Since chrysanthemum is in the ragweed family, if you are allergic to ragweed, avoid this herb!
- Eat local honey – It may seem strange to expose yourself to the very pollen that may trigger allergies; but, in honey, the allergens are delivered in small, manageable doses and the effect over time is very much like undergoing a whole series of allergy immunology injections. And, hey, it would be a great addition to your chrysanthemum flower tea!
These are only some of the things you can do to get some relief from your seasonal allergies! Have a favorite allergy relief tip you’d like to share? I would love to hear about it in the comments, below.
With allergy-free embraces and chrysanthemum flower dreams,
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