WIN-ning Wednesday: Allergy Season

Spring is in the air… and so is a whole lot of pollen!  With the arrival of really warm temperatures, we’ve seen the trees, grass and flowers bloom pretty rapidly, which bring about an earlier start to allergy season.

Pollen allergies consist of one or a combination of these symptoms:

– itchy nose, eyes, ears or throat

– itchy skin

– runny nose

– irritated, watery eyes

– sneezing, coughing

– congested nose

– sinus pressure and headaches

A person’s level of sensitivity, the number of different pollens they are allergic to, and their general state of health, will impact the severity of allergic symptoms.

In conventional medicine, over the counter allergy medications are usually recommended.  These can work for some people.  However, others may find they experience side effects or their body adapts to the medication, resulting in lower effectiveness.

There are many wonderful natural solutions to address allergies.  Often, a licensed Naturopathic Doctor would take a two pronged approach by recommending something natural to address the specific symptoms a person is experiencing, while working on a deeper level to help address the allergy itself and help to resolve it.

Part of my own experience with naturopathic medicine involves my ability to address my own allergies.  As a kid I had severe seasonal allergies.  From May to the first frost I would experience a variety of different allergy symptoms depending on what I was exposed to (freshly cut grass, ragweed in the fall, etc.).  My symptoms were so severe that I regularly visited with an Allergist from the age of about 5 until I was 13.  When I was about 8 or 9 I went for the typical “allergy shots” with the hope that it would help resolve my allergies.  I did this for 3 summers, with my allergies never wavering.  From an early age, I knew all the different allergy medications by heart… which ones worked for me and which ones didn’t.  Gosh, I remember how many fun outdoor summer occasions in my youth were dampened by my allergies.

I experienced allergies every spring and summer season into my 20s.  When I started my studies in Naturopathic Medicine I decided to start using natural solutions to address my allergy symptoms.  By that time, I felt that the amount of allergy medication I had taken over the years probably wasn’t the greatest for my liver.  I started out using homeopathic remedies to curb whatever I was experiencing at the time…a blocked nose here, an itchy throat there.  I was amazed at how effective they were.  This stuff was great!  For me, I found it to be as effective as the over the counter allergy medication I had used in the past.  From there, I kept working away at addressing some of the root causes for my allergies and by the time I graduated from the program my allergies had resolved.

I’m happy to say that I’m still allergy free!  Through my training, and my own history as an allergy sufferer, working with people who have allergies in my practice is something I am enthusiastic about because I know there are great options for treating allergies naturally.  The less medicine we find ourselves relying on, the better, especially for kids.

There are so many great options for treating allergies naturally.  Work with a licensed Naturopathic Doctor to find the solutions that are the best fit for you.


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