The key to preventing allergies is to know what a patient is allergic to
and avoid the allergens. Key allergens are identified not only by testing
but by the history provided by the patient. If a patient is allergic
during particular seasons, then it is likely he/she is allergic to
pollens. Tree pollen is the earliest produced in the year often from Feb.
to April, then grasses in late spring and summer and finally weeds in the
summer and fall. Spores from outdoor molds are also produced throughout
the year, and will often be worse 3 to 4 days after a rainstorm. Pollens,
on the other hand, are often cleared by rain thus improving allergic
symptoms. If a patient is allergic to outdoor antigens, keep the windows
in the patient's house down and install furnace filters, or a
free-standing air filter, which will clean the allergens from your house.
Allergy symptoms present year round, may indicate
a sensitivity to animals (cats, dogs, horses, feathers, etc.), molds, dust mites
(house dust) or cockroaches. Cats by far produce the most powerful allergen. The
allergen can be present over 6 months after the cat is removed from the house
and can easily be brought into the house on visitor's clothing. Allergens from
horses and feathers are commonly found in the upholstery of furniture. Indoor
molds grow anywhere it is wet. This includes, basements, bathrooms, garages,
kitchens and around all plants. Using a dehumidifier and replacing real plants
with plastic plants will often help. A house dust allergy is actually an allergy
to fecal material to the dust mite. Taking out carpets and installing wooden or
linoleum floors will help, especially in the bedroom where you spend the most
time. A plastic cover over bedroom pillows and mattress will help to reduce
exposure. Bed sheets and linens should be washed in hot water (130 deg F ). Using a A filtered vacuum can also be helpful.
Here are some helpful suggestions that may reduce
the frequency and severity of your allergy symptoms:
House Dust Mites:
*Avoid overstuffed furniture, shelves, and
other dusty surfaces.
*Minimize use of rugs; bare wood or tile floors are best.
*Vacuum away from people who have allergies to help them avoid dust
*Correctly ventilate your home.
*Maintain heating system, and change filters regularly.
*Keep all clothes in closed closets; keep wool clothing in plastic bags.
*Use washable, synthetic blankets and pillows, and wash bedding frequently.
*Wash bed sheets and pillow cases weekly in hot water (130 deg F)
*Reduce indoor humidity to less than50%
*Cover mattress with aired-out plastic.
*Vigorously clean inside, consider using benzyl benzoate or tannic acid to
cleanse. These can be dangerous chemicals and must be used properly or
by a professional cleaner.
*Avoid fresh cut grass.
*Us air conditioner on indoor cycle (for outdoor molds and pollens.) .
*Avoid "hot spots" of mold growth or mold concentration:
--live plants, dried plants, flowers
--basements, closets, bathrooms, shower stalls
--clothes dryers, air conditioners, humidifiers
*Reduce humidity to 50%, which is conducive to dust mite growth and molds; avoid using belt-
*Use a HEPA filter.
*Avoid contact with pets. Do not
sleep with your pets, keep pets out side.
*Avoid tobacco smoke.
*Use and store chemicals wisely.
Perennial rhinitis can also be triggered by
common household cleaners. The following is a list of useful alternatives:
*Ammonia--in pure form can be used for general
*Baking soda--use for general cleaning and deodorizing.
*Beeswax, lemon oil, raw linseed oil, mineral oil, olive oil, paste wax--use
to polish furniture.
*Non-chlorine bleach--use as household or laundry cleaner.
*Club soda--useful spot remover.
*Salt--works as a kitchen cleaner; loosens burned-on foods.
If you follow the above guidelines, see your
physician regularly, and use the medication your physician has prescribed, you
can help keep your perennial rhinitis under control.
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