Hay Fever Readiness Revealed

Ragweed allergies require proactive measures to avoid irritating symptoms

/ Author:  / Reviewed by: Joseph V. Madia, MD

(RxWiki News) An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, and this is the case with ragweed allergies. Allergists are forecasting hay fever will soon arrive in most parts of the country.

Mid-August is the time of year when ragweed allergy symptoms start to appear, but it is a bit later in the southern states. Start early with medications and environmental controls before the symptoms appear.

"Control your environmental allergens and talk with an allergist about medications."

To help the 10 percent of Americans affected by ragweed allergies, the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI) suggest following these tips:

  • Ragweed travels in the wind. Keep windows up in your car and securely closed in your house.
  • After spending time in the great outdoors, immediately shower and wash your clothes. Cleaning nasal passages with a salt water rince may also help.
  • Use a face mask while gardening or mowing the lawn. An even better idea is to let other family members not suffering from hay fever do those chores.
  • Consider allergy shots if non-prescription medications aren't helping. Allergy shots can diminish or eliminate nasal and eye allergy symptoms altogether.

Dr. Myron Zitt, past president of ACAAI reports that allergy shots may also help reduce your allergy symptoms and amount of medications needed. The shots can also present a barrier to the development of asthma and other allergies.

Continue taking allergy medicine even after the pollen isn't detectable, because eye and nasal symptoms tend to linger even after pollen isn't traceable.

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Review Date: 
July 18, 2011
Last Updated:
July 22, 2011