According to the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, allergies incur Americans up to $18 billion in medical expenses; they take up number six as a leading cause of chronic illnesses. The risk for allergies increases as you grow old and the problem is likely to go unrecognized. Unfortunately, changes to the immune system that occur as you age mean that your body’s response to inflammation from allergies is not as strong as it once was. The resulting effect is that you are likely to experience problems with allergies as seasons’ change, which is characterized by sneezing, a running nose and watery eyes.
Fortunately, there are precautions you can take to prevent allergies as you age, such as:
While you may enjoy indoor gardening as a relaxing activity, avoid having any pollen producing plants indoors. If you must have plants within the house, water them occasionally to avoid mold from growing, which then creates mold pollen. Additionally, avoid using silk and other fake plants, as they are notorious dust collectors.
Invest in Sunglasses
If you are likely to experience hay fever from wind-borne pollen, invest in a pair of quality sunglasses that wrap around your eyes to prevent as much pollen as possible from getting into your eyes. If you wear optical glasses, ask your eye doctor to give you prescription sunglasses to help you outdoors. Sunglasses will prevent the amount of pollen getting into your eyes, making you feel better.
Switch up your Exercise Routine
Avoid outdoor exercises in the morning; pollen count is highest before 10 o’clock. If you enjoy jogging or taking a walk, do it in the afternoon or later in the evening. Alternatively, choose a different exercise activity such as yoga, which allows you to work out in a controlled environment, with numerous other health benefits.
Run your Air Conditioner
Keep your filter clean and run your air conditioner instead of opening the windows, which lets in pollen and other allergens. The air conditioner reduces humidity within the house and serves as an alternative to fans, which end up blowing dust and pollen around the room, worsening the likelihood of you developing allergies.
While there are several precautions you can take to prevent or reduce the effects od allergies, you cannot avoid them entirely. If you notice any persistent irritation or inflammation, consult your doctor immediately. Conditions such as a congested nose can become critical fast, especially if you suffer from pre-existing cardiovascular or nasal conditions. Lastly, avoid traditional antihistamines as you can develop negative side effects or suffer from effects of mixing them with your other prescriptions.
Your health care needs change gradually as age, forcing you to take extra precautions to stay healthy. Avoid allergens as much as possible and consult your doctor if you notice any symptoms that may indicate an allergic reaction. Taking the right precautions allows you to enjoy the outdoors more regardless of the season.