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How to Cope with Chronic Winter Allergies

There’s no rest for people with sensitive sinuses, even in the winter. While spring brings plenty of outdoor allergens with it, winter allergies can be harder to manage since the causes are much closer to home.

Coping with allergies is more about creating the right home environment, but in some cases, you may have to see a doctor. Let’s look at ways you can manage your winter allergies better.

A man blowing his nose into a paper napkin.

Why Winter Allergies Happen

Everyone knows that pollen in the spring and summer can be a real problem for people who consistently deal with allergies. In winter, most of the outdoor triggers are gone, but the ones inside may still be causing problems.

One of the main culprits of indoor allergies is dander or dead skin flakes from pets that can cause extreme and chronic allergies for most people. Dust mites, another culprit, are extremely small bugs that live in upholstery, carpets, and even your bedding that can cause any number of reactions.

Mold is definitely something to look for in your house if you have allergies. Found in damp regions of the home in and near bathrooms, basements, or the boiler room, mold is kryptonite for people who deal with allergies. Cockroach droppings can aggravate allergies too.

Home Remedies for Winter Allergies

The best way to get rid of winter allergies is to find the sources and reduce the causes as much as possible. A high-power vacuum with a HEPA filter should be used regularly to keep carpets and floors as clean as possible. Wash your sheets every week as well as rugs and bedding more frequently with hot water to get rid of dust mites. You may want to look at pulling up your carpeting and laying down wood or tile flooring if the situation worsens.

Keeping pets clean and bathed can reduce dander while fixing cracks and leaky faucets can reduce cockroaches in a home.

However, if you’re already doing things to prevent allergies, you can try to address the symptoms as much as possible. For example, heaters, which dry out the air, can make your allergies worse. Try adding a humidifier if you continue to suffer from a runny nose and congestion.

Try herbal teas, plenty of fluids, and chicken soup to keep yourself hydrated and soothe your throat. For extreme congestion, take some steam from a bowl of boiling water to loosen the mucus that’s blocking your throat. Pro tip: add some camphor or eucalyptus oils to really make a difference.

A sick woman holding a cup of tea about to sneeze.

Being Cautious About Medication

The one thing that you should be wary of is medication. While there are OTC medications available for allergies, many of them aren’t used by doctors today and can have side effects. If your allergies won’t go away and keep coming back, despite taking measures to alter your environment, an Otorhinolaryngologist (ENT) at our hospital in Houston, Texas, can help prescribe medication that’s right for you and your condition.

At Houston Physicians’ Hospital, we strive to provide medical consultation and care for even the mildest conditions that affect your health. Whether you need an ENT consult, physical therapy services, or even back surgery in Houston, TX — our doctors and professionals are here to help.

Visit our website to find an ENT specialist that’s right for you.