Top 10 Tips for Dealing with Grass Allergies
The benefits of living in Florida are plentiful. Sunny days, beautiful plants, and warm temperatures are all a part of daily life in the sunshine state. The only downside to such a warm, welcoming climate are the allergies that many residents deal with throughout the year.
Florida grasses, such as Bahia, Bermuda, and Johnson grasses, are significant allergy culprits in the spring and summer months. Long summers cause grasses to grow longer and produce pollen which results in prolonged exposure grass allergens.
Grass pollen allergies typically cause itchy and watery eyes, a runny nose, scratchy throat, nasal congestion, fatigue, and even asthma attacks in severe cases. The symptoms can appear similar to colds and the flu that many may confuse allergy symptoms with a viral illness.
10 Tips to Reduce Grass Allergy Symptoms
While grass allergy season happens every year, it doesn’t mean you should be miserable. Use the following tips for dealing with grass allergies so you can enjoy life as normal this spring.
- Schedule an appointment with your allergist as soon as possible. Don’t try to tough it out. An allergist can recommend the most optimal medications or other allergy treatments such as immunotherapy (allergy shots) so you don’t have to suffer all summer long. Don’t wait until the symptoms start, schedule your appointment early.
- Download an allergy app or check the pollen forecast daily. On days with high pollen counts, enjoy indoor activities such as going to a movie or wandering around the mall. Warm days typically result in higher pollen counts. Damp or wet days hold pollen to the ground and are better days to enjoy the outdoors.
- Keep grasses in your yard short. The shorter your lawn is, the less pollen will likely be released into the air.
- Delegate yard work duties. If you suffer from grass allergies, mowing your lawn or doing yard work increases your pollen exposure. Delegate these tasks to another family member or hire a yard crew. If you must do the work yourself, wear an N95 protective mask and take an antihistamine beforehand.
- Change your clothes after being outside. Don’t risk bringing pollen indoors on your clothes and wash your clothes often.
- Clean your children and pets. Wash the clothes of babies and toddlers often to avoid inhaling pollen they pick up. Also, wipe down your pets and bath them often during the spring and summer to keep them from bringing pollen indoors.
- Dress children appropriately. If your child suffers from grass allergies and will be playing on the grass, dress them in cool but long pants and sleeves to avoid contact as much as possible.
- Avoid hanging clothes out to dry outside. While the fresh smell and economic benefits of hang drying your laundry may be preferred, it exposes your clean clothes to pollen. Dry your clothes indoors during the spring and summer months in the dryer or on a hanging rack.
- Keep the windows shut. A breeze is nice, but not on days with high pollen counts. Keep your home cool by closing blinds or drapes and using air conditioning.
- Clean the air in your home. To ensure you have clean air in your home each day, change your HVAC air filter every three months. It may also be beneficial to invest in a HEPA filter air purifier to reduce the allergens in your home.
Don’t let spring and summer grass allergies get the best of you. Schedule an appointment with an allergist at the Allergy & Asthma Specialists of North Florida today.