In addition to providing medical intervention to help your patients recover from various ailments, providing patient education is also a crucial part of the job. On any given day, you will deal with patients suffering from a wide range of problems, ranging from the common cold to critical emergencies. Knowing and understanding different health issues can better prepare you help your patients understand how to take better care of themselves.
As we wade through the cold winter months and await spring, it’s high time to discuss seasonal allergies. While they aren’t a major problem for most, seasonal allergies are troublesome enough. Today, we will discuss what seasonal allergies are, their types, symptoms, what causes them, and how to treat them.
What are Seasonal Allergies?
Seasonal allergies can cause symptoms at specific times of the year. Any allergy occurring during a specific season is also called hay fever. It is when your immune system has an adverse reaction to outdoor allergens like pollens, and indoor allergens like pet dander or mold, resulting in several symptoms varying in severity based on what allergens trigger these reactions in individuals.
What are Spring Season Allergies?
When people think of seasonal allergies, spring-season allergies are the most common type they consider. While people can suffer from allergies throughout the year, spring is when the presence of outdoor allergens is at its highest. Caused by tree and grass pollen, mold, and insect bites and stings, seasonal allergies are the most common during spring.
Depending on the triggers, a person can experience various symptoms due to spring allergies, including:
- Runny or stuffy nose
- Swollen mucus membranes
- Watery and itchy eyes
While not as common as breathing-related symptoms, spring allergies can also cause skin rashes, which can result from exposure to different kinds of plants or insect bites.
Your doctor may prescribe antihistamines and other medicine to help you control your spring allergy symptoms. However, allergies are largely unavoidable, and it is more a matter of taking steps to manage your allergies. Here are a few things you can do to prevent the onset of seasonal allergy symptoms:
- Avoid contact with outdoor allergens:
- Minimize outdoor activities early in the morning
- Wash your clothes and take a shower after spending time outdoors to remove pollen and other allergens from your clothes, skin, and hair
- Keep windows and doors closed during the night
- Wear clothes that properly cover you when outside
- Take measures to keep indoor air clean:
- Use dehumidifiers to keep indoor air dryProperly service your HVAC system and use HEPA filters to improve indoor air quality
- Consider keeping a portable HEPA filter in your bedroom
What Are Winter Season Allergies?
While less common in winter, seasonal allergies can impact people during the winter. Seasonal allergies occurring in winter happen mostly due to indoor allergens like pet dander, mildew, dust, mold, and spores.
Winter allergies can easily be confused with the common cold due to the similarities in their symptoms. Winter and cold allergy symptoms can include:
- Runny nose
- Itchy eyes
- Sore throat
However, it is necessary to determine whether the symptoms are due to allergies or the common cold.
Taking antihistamines is the best bet to alleviate symptoms of winter allergies. However, prevention is always a better cure than treating allergies after they arise. Here are a few things you can do to keep your winter allergy symptoms at bay:
- Regularly bathing your pets to reduce pet dander
- Vacuuming the house regularly to remove dust mites and pet dander
- Checking the house for mold and taking steps to remediate the issue
The more you know about seasonal allergies, the better you can provide patient education and help your patients avoid the health problems that come with allergies. Speaking of educating your patients, nurses must complete a required amount of contact hours with nursing continuing education courses for their license renewal.
If the time is close for you to take nursing continuing education courses, the online nursing CEUs available from Fast CE For Less at https://fastceforless.com/ce-courses-for-nursing/ offer a quick, convenient, and affordable solution for you.