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Allergy Blog

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Coping with Spring Allergies in Ohio

Allergic rhinitis, more commonly called “hay fever” or “seasonal allergies”, can be quite a bother for many people during this time of year. The most common allergy symptoms include sneezing, itchy nose, runny nose, and congestion, in addition to red, itchy, watery eyes and coughing.  

According to the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI), 23.6 million Americans were diagnosed with hay fever in the last year. The prevalence of allergies is surging upward, with as many as 30 percent of adults, and up to 40 percent of children, having at least one allergy.  Here are a few tips and tricks to help you have your best Spring season yet!

Easy is good

While you’re battling those terrible allergens, keep in mind that you can affect change at home. 

  • Monitor pollen and mold counts; weather reports often include this information.
  • Keep windows and doors shut at home and in your car during allergy season.
  • Stay inside midday and during the afternoon, when pollen counts are highest.
  • Take a shower, wash your hair and change your clothes after you’ve been working or playing outdoors.
  • Consider wearing a NIOSH-rated 95 filter mask when mowing the lawn or doing other chores outdoors, and take appropriate medication beforehand.

Get ahead of symptoms

Many allergy sufferers may not be aware that if you start taking your allergy medications before the worst symptoms hit, your suffering will be greatly alleviated. Although people think spring starts in April or May, spring allergy symptoms begin earlier, so start taking your prescription allergy medications two to three weeks before your symptoms normally appear.

Avoid first-generation antihistamines

If you plan to take an oral medication to treat your hay fever, think twice before using first generation antihistamines such as diphenhydramine (Benadryl) and chlorpheniramine (ChlorTrimeton). They can cause drowsiness and symptoms like dry mouth, dry eyes, and constipation. Look for non-sedating second-generation antihistamine treatments such as cetirizine, levocetirizine, fexofenadine, loratadine or desloratadine instead.

Intranasal corticosteroids are an effective treatment

Studies show that intranasal corticosteroids (fluticasone, mometasone, budesonide, triamcinolone) are the most effective treatment if you suffer from persistent allergy symptoms, especially if they are interfering with your quality of life. They may even help control the symptoms that accompany eye allergies. 

Pseudoephedrine is effective but has side effects

Many people use the oral decongestant pseudoephedrine to clear up a stuffy nose. Be aware that pseudoephedrine has many side effects including insomnia, loss of appetite, irritability, and heart palpitations. It should also not be taken if you are pregnant.

Immunotherapy: the most effective and natural treatment for allergies

Many people in search of “natural” allergy treatments don’t realize that immunotherapy – allergy shots – are actually the most natural treatment of all. Immunotherapy involves giving gradually increasing doses of the substances you’re allergic to. The incremental increases of the allergens cause the immune system to become less sensitive, which reduces allergy symptoms in the future. Immunotherapy is also effective in treating allergic asthma. Allergy shots help relieve the allergic reactions that trigger asthma episodes and decrease the need for asthma medications.

If you are suffering with allergy symptoms and your regular treatments aren’t working, it’s time to see a board-certified allergist. Allergists are specially trained to help you take control of your allergies and asthma, so you can live the life you want. At Modern Allergy, Dr. Greg Bennett, a board-certified Allergist, can perform testing to accurately diagnose and treat allergy sufferers so the spring sneezing season doesn’t have to be bothersome!  Call us today at 614.758.7600 or schedule online at

March 25, 2024

Dr. Greg Bennett headshot

Dr. Greg Bennett is board certified in both Pediatrics and Allergy/Immunology and has over 10 years of experience in the field of medicine. ‍

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