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How to Deal with Allergies this Spring

Apr 20, 2015 08:39AM ● By Amy
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Dr. Josh Prickett, Medical Director, North Tarrant E-Care Emergency Center

Spring is one of the most beautiful times of the year, but the sneezing, watery eyes and other problems that can come with allergies take the fun out of the season for many people. E-Care Emergency Centers would like to share some information that will help you put together a game plan to deal with this problem.

You Are Not Alone
About 40 million people in the U.S. have some kind of seasonal allergy, which is commonly called hay fever  Many allergy sufferers inherit the problem from their parents, but others can develop allergies after long-term exposure to environmental triggers such as pollen and mold spores.

But allergies can be far more than a mere annoyance. They can also lead to potentially life-threatening asthma attacks. That is why it is very important you put together a plan now to minimize the chances of being affected by spring allergies.

Getting in Front of the Problem
If you are taking medications to help control seasonal allergies, the time is now to start them. These types of drugs will help keep those allergies from flaring up completely. 

But even if you only use over-the-counter medicines to combat your allergies, it is still important that you keep them handy. These include oral antihistamines, decongestants, topical nasal sprays and more. If you are already experiencing allergy issues and the medication you are using does not seem as effective as it once did, try switching brands. Unless you plan on going to bed soon after taking a medication, look for “non-drowsy” medicine so you can stay alert.

Controlling Your Environment
You don’t want to stay off the golf course or out of the yard just because you are afraid you’ll have an allergy attack. One thing you may consider when working outside mowing your grass or raking leaves is wearing a protective facemask. You can either buy a disposable mask, or use a respirator mask with a built in HEPA (high efficiency particulate air) filter if your allergies tend to be more severe. 

But once you get back indoors, don’t automatically assume you’ll be protected from allergens. You should also use a HEPA filter for your vacuum cleaner as well as your air conditioner. Keep the windows closed and set your ventilation system to recirculate when you’re in the car.

Whether your allergies are mild or severe, if you have a good plan in place there will be no reason to be miserable this spring.

If you would like to learn more from doctors near Southlake about reducing the chances you’ll be hit with allergies this spring, call E-Care Emergency Centers at 817-281-7277 If you ever need emergency or urgent care, use this convenient form to check in online.

Josh Prickett, MD, is currently medical director for North Tarrant location of E-Care Emergency Center in North Richland Hills. Dr. Prickett graduated from the University of Oklahoma Medical School and has been practicing emergency care in Oklahoma, Minnesota and Texas since 1989.  He has been married to his wife Carin for 30 years. They have a son Jonathan, a daughter Whitney, and a son-in-law John. Dr. Prickett and his family are active in their church and love being Southlake residents.