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23 Do’s And Don’ts For Coping With Spring Allergies

photos showing various ways to treat spring allergies

Wondering How To Get Rid Of Spring Allergies? These Tips Can Help

I consider it a major blessing that I’m not one of the many people who have to deal with the misery of spring allergies. Unfortunately, my husband Dave, daughter Britta, and daughter-in-law Kaitlyn do experience spring allergies, bless their hearts.

Every year when pollen season rolls around, remedies that can treat spring allergies and relieve symptoms become a hot topic of conversation between the 3 of them. And since they’re far from the only ones suffering, I thought I could help them and you by doing some research on the topic!

I focused my search on ways to treat spring allergies and strategies to avoid triggers. I ended up finding a lot of useful information, and organized the best tips into a list of “do’s and don’ts” to help you deal with spring allergies.

Do’s And Don’ts For Dealing With Spring Allergies

DO These Things To Minimize And Relieve Allergy Symptoms

woman putting an allergy essential oil blend into a diffuser

DO try All Clear essential oil blend as an alternative or supplement to over-the-counter allergy medications. The anti-inflammatory essential oils in All Clear can help relieve symptoms like nasal congestion, itchy/watery eyes, and more, making it something like a natural antihistamine!

Related: The Most Useful Home Remedies Have These 9 Things In Common

DO start taking antihistamines early in the season before symptoms start. If you’re taking one that may cause drowsiness, like Benadryl, take it before you go to bed to avoid drowsiness during the day.

DO switch up your allergy medications as needed. Your system can acclimate to an allergy medication after about 4-6 weeks and limit its effectiveness. If that happens, try a different allergy medication for a couple of weeks before switching back to your regular brand.

woman walking a dog outside with mountains in the background

DO exercise outdoors in the afternoons when pollen levels are lower, or in an indoor gym.

DO download a pollen count or allergy app that can help you make informed decisions about spending time outside during the spring. Search “pollen app” or “allergy app” in your device’s app store to find one you like.

DO consult “pollen forecasts” on sites like WeatherBug. These forecasts will let you know when pollen counts are likely to be high based on factors like temperature, precipitation, wind, and more.

woman putting shoes into a bin

DO take off your shoes and change your clothes when you get home to avoid tracking pollen throughout your house.

DO wear sunglasses outside to help keep pollen out of your eyes.

DO change your the filter in your HVAC system before pollen season arrives. You’ll get the best filtering if you replace the old one with a HEPA filter.

showing with the water running and steamy doors

DO take a shower before you go to bed to rinse pollen off your hair and body.

DO add yogurt, fermented foods, and other sources of probiotics to your diet.

DO eat foods that contain omega-3 fatty acids, like cold water fatty fish, that can help reduce the inflammation that contributes to allergy symptoms.

woman putting a down comforter into a washing machine

DO keep your house clean — vacuum and dust regularly, and wash your bedding frequently.

Related: 10 Simple Things That Will Reduce Dust In Your House

DO incorporate more local honey into your diet. Some suggest that consuming locally produced honey can help your body grow accustomed to the pollen in your area and help reduce spring allergies.

DO consider getting tested for allergies to give you a better understanding of your allergy triggers. Ask your doctor about blood or skin tests.

woman using a net pot in a bathroom

DO use a neti pot or saline spray to clean pollen and other irritants out of your nasal passages.

DO eat onions. They contain quercetin, which has been shown to help with allergy symptoms.

DO take 2,000 mg of vitamin C daily to help prevent the formation of histamines that contribute to excess mucus and runny noses.

dog laying down on a blue bed

DON’T Do These Things That Can Worsen Spring Allergies

DON’T open the windows in your house or car when pollen counts are high.

DON’T stress too much. Stress can elevate your levels of cytokine (a protein our bodies produce as part of the allergic response) and aggravate allergy symptoms.

DON’T forget to turn on the bathroom fan while you shower to prevent mold from forming, as mold is a major allergen. If you do spot mold in your bathroom, get rid of it ASAP.

DON’T let your pets sleep in your bed when you’re dealing with spring allergies, as their fur is likely to carry pollen.

DON’T park your car under trees, if you can avoid it.

What other allergy do’s or don’ts would you add to this list?

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Jill Nystul (aka Jillee)

Jill Nystul is an accomplished writer and author who founded the blog One Good Thing by Jillee in 2011. With over 30 years of experience in homemaking, she has become a trusted resource for contemporary homemakers by offering practical solutions to everyday household challenges.I share creative homemaking and lifestyle solutions that make your life easier and more enjoyable!

About Jillee

Jill Nystul

Jill’s 30 years of homemaking experience, make her the trusted source for practical household solutions.

About Jillee

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  • That’s reminds me. The store I work at occasionally will have great deals on stuff marked way down. For $ 5.00 I got a small bottle of Rhinecort that is still good for another year. You use it exactly like Linda was describing. If it’s just nasal stuff it works. It beats taking a pill that dries up your throat and it makes it hard to talk. I try to only take the pills when my allergies are bad with the itchy eyes.

  • My allergies got so bad that I was living on Zyrtec every day, year round. Even allergy shots didn’t make much difference. Someone told me about NAET treatments, and I laughed, but I was willing to try anything. They worked so well, that now, 20 years later, I still have no problems! Worth a try if you are desperate enough. NAET uses acupressure on acupuncture points — no needles for this! It may sound hokey at first, but it does work.

  • Go to the store and get this nasal spray : “NasalCrom”

    It contains cromolyn sodium, an anti-inflammatory medication. It works by preventing the release of substances in the body that cause inflammation. It inhibits the release of Histamine, which the body releases in response to allergens. That’s why you take Anti-histamines – allergy medications.

    It is sold over the counter, I bought mine at Walgreens for about 18.00. At first I had to use it 5-6 times per day, now I use it once daily or not al all. Last year I was on 2 allergy meds, Rx nose spray, and allergy eye drops. This year just oral meds and “Nasalcrom” , and I’m considering tapering off the oral meds.
    Flonase/Nasacort type sprays are recommended for twice daily use only, Nasalcrom can be used up to 6 times per day.
    And definitely use it before going outdoors.

    Instructions for use:
    First blow your nose, insert inhaler into nostril and look down at the floor, spray inhaler, sniff. repeat on other nostril.
    Looking down at the floor stops the spray from going down your throat, and directs it where its needed.

    Cromolyn sodium is also available in over the counter allergy eye drops if you have itchy eyes.

    I’d also like to add that men with facial hair should wash their faces after being outdoors in allergy season if they are not able to shower. Women should wash their hair and shower after gardening or lawn mowing to reduce allergens.
    Hope this helps some of you.

  • Jillee, Kaitlyn, thank you so much for this. I do use Essential oils for a lot of things. I love them, mostly because they are natural. I use a lot of lavender in a lot of things. I also use a lot of peppermint oil. These are my most used, but I use a lot of others, too. I’m glad to see that there is a trend to get back to natural things. I make a lot of my own salves, and such as that. I even make my own soap. I’m in love with the natural way of doing thins, and you, Jillee, have been a tremendous help in this. Thank you bot so much for this post!

    • Try Monat it’s naturally based botanical hair care, no harmful chemicals and prevention of hair loss, stimulating hair growth and beautiful hair! “locksofjoy.mymonat.com”

  • Thanks for re-posting this. My allergies are just awful already.. We had a very mild winter here in Missouri with almost no snow. Very unusual for us. I was hoping it wouldn’t make me miserable. Also checking mold and pollen counts is good. Our levels have been high already. Also, all the rain we’ve gotten lately doesn’t help any.

  • I have a dog with allergies that have gotten worse with age. I started her on bee pollen this year (in February when she started getting itchy) and it immediately helped. I recommend all pet owners to look into it.

    Also, Quercetin with Bromelain by Now Foods is supposed to be good for allergies, but luckily, I don’t allergies to confirm and my partner is not good at taking the consistently, but the reviews are good. If the bee pollen didn’t work, I was going to try them on my dog, but thanks to how well the bee pollen is working, I haven’t had to.

  • Natural honey before bedtime stopped my allergies plus there is the added bonus of sleeping like a baby that is a side benefit of honey. I take the vitamin c, also. You really have to research the origin of your honey. Best to buy locally produced honey. Much of the honey in grocery stores these days is artificial or has added sweeteners so it won’t crystals and all the pollen has been filtered out. You need the pollen in order to build up your immunity to the allergic reaction.

    • Local honey can provide relief from seasonable allergies. Consider the logic: the bees are collecting nectar from the very plants that are making you sneeze and sniffle, and so with honey, you can ingest minute amounts of the very allergen that is troubling you.

      • Raw honey has never worked for me always made me worse! My allergist wanted me to try allergy shots so that is what I’m doing right now. I hope I see a difference soon but I was told it could take almost a year to see a difference.

  • Well, Jillee, after all your remarks about essential oils, I’ve just placed my first order at Sparks Naturals for the LLP Allergy blend. (Thanks for the discount code!) I’m hoping I’ll notice miraculous changes in things I never expected! Actually, if it just lessens the usual hay fever symptoms in myself and my two daughters, I’ll be satisfied.

  • I can’t take most traditional med’s for seasonal allergies so I do multiple things to “help” keep symptoms at bay. The combination of multiple things allows me a much less miserable season. Every 6 years I get a pneumonia shot which an allergist said helps. I use a pollen mask when I do go outside.

    I also place a bit of vaseline in each nostril, which keeps pollen from going deeper into sinus cavities. I use Arm & Hammer Brand Simply Saline Solution to rinse out nose 2 -3 times a day. I also use Nasalcrom (otc) 2 times a day and at bedtime I use Flonase. I adhere strictly to all the usual advise such as daily showers & rinse hair if you go out etc. Read as many articles as you can and stick to a routine.

    • Please be careful with raw honey or bee pollen as it may cause and allergic reaction. I tried both and couldn’t use either one. Start with very small amounts.

  • I’ve found that nettle tea works really well. I get mine from Traditional Medicinals. It really helps. You can also consume dried nettles in capsule form. Good luck to everyone battling their allergies! Thanks for the helpful post! I will definitely try honey.

  • For those who take over the counter allergy meds try taking them before you go to bed. That way when you wake up in the morning, a bad time for allergies, the meds will still be in your system, and you won’t be all puffy eyed and sneezy.

  • I do the neil med sinus rinses twice daily. You can buy these at Wal-Mart . The neil med bottle and sinus rinse packets are sold separately and can be found by the allergy meds. The packets are ph balanced so they do not burn . Use distilled water. My ent told me that faucet water can cause stiffness. This has helped me so much to keep sinus infections away and to stay off so many antibiotics . Hope this helps someone.

  • I had a terrible allergy to practically everything and after taking black cumin oil for two years (one tablespoonful in the omrning and one in the evening) I now have NO symptoms whatsoever. It is said that black cumin oil treats everything but death! : )

  • ‘Tis the Season, to be Sneezin’.
    My husband suffers terribly with allergies. He is a nonbeliever when it comes to using essential oils, so I have to slip it to him without him knowing. Last year I bought the Spark Naturals LLP and been dosing him ever since. Using LLP in a diffuser and putting about 15 drops in his leave-in conditioner is usually all it takes, but when pollen counts peak I also do the following.
    1. Add a few drops LLP in his aftershave.
    2. Put LLP in the DIY Dove hand wash (Jillee’s recipe)
    3. Make (thanks to Jillee’s recipe) LLP linen spray and spray the bed & couches etc.
    4. Spray the clothes in the closet with the LLP linen spray. Also spray socks, with an extra dose of the linen spray because the bottom of the feet are known to absorb EO’s quickly.

    During pollen down times his allergies are hardly noticeable and I forget to “medicate” him. But, as soon as I start throwing multiple empty tissue boxes away–I know its time to start again. The good news is that it works almost instantly.

  • Something to keep in mind…. when you take antihistamines, do not drink alcohol. Antihistamines block the detoxification pathways in the liver and therefore you will be “drunk” in a very small amount of alcohol and last a long time. Crazy but true….many DUI’s are a result of this.

  • The Weather Channel has an app that not only gives you the current weather, plus ten day forecast, but also tracks what is high for pollen. You can have as many different locations set as you want. So if you travel, even if something isn’t high in your home area, you can see it for your destination. Invaluable app! We are very high right now for trees and weeds!
    Thanks for the great article, Kaitlyn!

  • This is really helpful my allergies get pretty bad. And some of these I knew like the local honey which really does help but some I didn’t and I think will be helpful this season thanks!! I love your blog I stumbled on it through bloglovin.

  • Thanks for this great information! Allergy season has started early in New York. I’m definitely pulling out my Neti Pot and make a batch of the natural antihistamine. Keep sharing your gems Jillee!

  • I’ve had to resort to immunotherapy to desensitize my body to allergens. It’s helping! I wish I’d done it a long time ago rather than suffering for most of the year for so long.

    • Elle,
      You can put them into capsules so that you can swallow them, or with therapeutic grade oils you can drink the lemon and/or peppermint oil right in your water. I always seem to put too much in, though. ;)
      Hopefully someone below this comment has already gotten to it, because I’m not an expert. I also happen to be allergic to lavender. (I’m Kaitlyn’s sister, lol, one of the two she mentions above with all the allergies. *snort*. My sister is awesome.)

      DoTerra just started selling all three in one in ready-made capsules, or I’m sure there’s something on Rebecca’s site (Camp Wander) about where to find the empty capsules. Sparks tend to be less expensive than DoTerra, if you don’t mind making the capsules yourself. Both companies make great oils.

      If no one below has already answered these questions, I can go look for you and post again later. :)

      -Rachel

  • Wow this good. I’ve never heard of some of these remedies. I’ve tried the neti-pot , but didn’t have much success with it. It made my. Ears get blocked up instead. I do agree with Kaitlym about the climate changes and allergies. Mine started when I was a
    Teenager growing up in Colorado. Then I moved to Missouri and
    Have been here for 20 +years. The Midwest is definitely a much
    Worse climate for allergies due to the humidity and high mold
    Counts. I try to stay inside as much as possible. Also, amazingly
    When I had my cat, it didn’t affect my allergies. One thing that
    Really helped was to keep miss kitty an indoor cat as much as
    Possible. It’s interesting how when I go to different places like
    Utah and Virginia to visit family that I don’t have as much
    Trouble with my allergies.

  • additional things we do for allergies

    DON”T shower in the morning – it washes off the natural oils that protect your body and leaves you more apt to pock up allergies as well as viruses during cold and flu season.

    DO try Nopal Cactus for allergy symptoms. It is extremely beneficial for some people

    DO pay attention to fragrance from shampoos , deodorants, perfumes, even lipsticks, air fresheners, even dish soap and other cleansers, laundry detergent and dryer sheets, etc. because those can really add to your personal discomfort.

    DON’T use a feather duster – those only re-distribute a lot of the particles – use something that collects dust particles.

  • Years ago, back in 1990 or so, my Mother encouraged me to try something she’d heard on a TV show … radish juice. And so I did … I purchased a fairly inexpesive juicer and for about 4 months or so, I would drink radish juice along with carrot or apple or or strawberry or green pepper or celery juice or any combination of these, only about 4-5 radishes, throughout the week and to this day I am no longer affected by seasonal allergies. I am still amazed by this! It definitely worked for me!

  • So many good ideas here! I had no idea that onions or probiotics could help. The hubby and I are trying local honey now that we’ve moved to a different region with different local flora and it’s working quite well! I lived in northern Ohio for 20 years and got awful, awful allergies up there. Still hits me hard every time I go back to visit family.

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