Grass pollen allergy is more formally called seasonal allergic rhinitis. With it, you’ll get symptoms that include runny nose, congestion and, more often than not, watery eyes. Those who are severely allergic, may get hives with grass pollen contact and, on occasion, even anaphylaxis if grass proteins get into the blood system due to scraped skin.
Top 10 Tips For Managing Grass Allergy:
1. Let’s get obvious: don’t mow the lawn, delegate. Ah, you live alone, there’s no one to delegate to. In that case, allergists advise Allergic Living that it’s best to: take an antihistamine before mowing and wear a protective mask from the hardware store.
2. Keep the lawn short, that way, it’s not pollinating. (Grass pollinates through the air, not by insects like showy flowers. This is why it gets so easily into the nasal passages and eye ducts.)
3. Check your local forecast and pollen count every day. On high grass pollen count days, head for the mall or take in a movie; not a good time to be outdoors. Damper days are better for people managing grass allergy: the wetness holds the pollen on the ground.
4. Cool your home with a combination of closed blinds and drapes and air conditioning. It’s important to keep the windows shut to keep out grass pollen, which pollinates for most of the summer.
5. Change your clothes when you coming in from a few hours outside. Washing your clothes frequently will reduce your personal pollen load.
6. Change the clothes frequently of babies and toddlers, so you don’t inhale the pollen they’ve picked up. Also, wipe off the dog’s fur and bathe the animal (more frequently than he’ll care for) during the summer.
7. The heck with that outdoors smell: do not hang out your just-washed laundry in the pollen-filled summer breeze.
8. Don’t tough it out, seek medication relief and enjoy your summer. Start by trying a newer, non-sedating antihistamine for daily control during the height of grass pollen season.
9. If antihistamines alone don’t help enough, ask your allergist about nasal corticosteroid sprays. These can be highly effective, and most are now available without prescription. You may also be a candidate for allergy shots (immunotherapy), for relief in the years to come. Newer sublingual tablets can also provide lasting relief. For eye symptoms, your allergist can prescribe good eye drops.
10. When your grass-allergic child will be playing on grass, aside from taking medications, he/she should wear cool but long pants when possible to avoid contact.
In better news, high grass-pollinating season ends with the arrival of August.
Visit aafa.org to learn more.