Most people think of allergy season as occurring during just during spring and summer months. However, for many, allergy season is year-round. When and how long you experience allergy symptoms depends on what you’re allergic to and how often you’re exposed. Below we review everything you need to know about year-round allergies.
What Is Allergic Rhinitis?
- Red, itchy, watery eyes.
- Runny or stuffy nose.
- Scratchy throat or cough.
If you have allergic rhinitis, you’ll experience these symptoms when exposed to an allergen. Allergens are the normally-harmless substances that trigger an immune response.
Common year-round allergens include pet dander, mold and dust mites.
Pet dander refers to the dead skin flakes that come from animals. Dander clings to clothing, furniture and carpet and can also float in the air. Some animals are more likely to trigger an allergic reaction than others; in fact, cat allergies are about twice as prevalent as dog allergies. In addition, some breeds are more “hypoallergenic” than others, such as poodles and schnauzers.
If you’re allergic to pet dander, we recommend:
- Bathing your pet regularly, but no more than once per week.
- Vacuuming floors and furniture frequently.
- Keeping pets out of your bedroom and off the furniture.
- Considering replacing carpet with hardwood.
Mold is a fungus that grows in damp places such as basements, garages, sheds, bathrooms, air conditioners and refrigerators. You’re more likely to have problems with mold if your house has poor ventilation and high levels of humidity.
To prevent mold from growing in your home:
- Use exhaust fans while showering.
- Invest in a dehumidifier from Wholesale Appliance Center. Be sure to clean the filters and coils regularly.
- Repair any leaky pipes promptly.
- Keep gutters clear.
Dust mites are microscopic arachnids that live in household dust and feed on human skin cells. Their bodies, saliva and feces can trigger an allergic reaction.
While you can’t get rid of all dust mites, you can reduce their presence by:
- Covering your mattresses and pillows with allergen-proof covers.
- Regularly washing all bedding and rugs in hot water.
- Using blinds rather than curtains as window coverings.
- Vacuuming regularly with a vacuum that has a high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter.
For more information or to schedule an appointment, call Charleston ENT & Allergy today.