As the rebirth of Spring gives way to the long, hot days of summer, seasonal allergies may not go away with the change of season but might just shift to a new or more intense set of symptoms. These warmer temperatures can lead to even more pollen production which can lead to even harsher symptoms that Spring produced.
While Spring allergy season brings the pollen from the trees and flowers, summer is the time for grasses and weeds to release their pollen which then triggers a whole new round of sneezing, watery and red eyes. While pollen is still the main culprit, weeds like ragweed (the most common allergy because it can travel for hundreds of miles in the wind), sagebrush, tumbleweed, and pigweed to name a few will bring their own set of irritants. And grasses like Bermuda, blue grasses, sweet vernal and red top will also cause havoc for the sinuses. And don’t forget the increase in pet hair as pets shed to keep cool in the warm summer months.
And adding another layer of irritation is the insect bites that come from some of summer’s new residents like bees, wasps, yellow jackets, and fire ants. Dust mites also peak during summer and thrive in warm, humid temperatures.
Instead of just treating the symptoms of seasonal allergies, acupuncture goes to the root problem by rebalancing the body’s energy systems, enhancing the immune system, and helping the body to heal naturally. Your acupuncturist will go through a complete health history to help you determine the cause of the allergies and target meridians on the body including the lungs, stomach, spleen, and colon to circulate qi (a type of energy connected to immunity) and provide a defense against seasonal allergies. Stimulating certain acupuncture points on the body will lead to a restoration of balance and relief from the sometimes debilitating symptoms of seasonal allergies.
To address your summer allergy symptoms, take the following precautions as you begin your acupuncture treatments:
- Limit your time outdoors when pollen counts, and smog levels are too high.
- Use an air purifier to keep pollutants at bay.
- Make sure you regularly clean air filters, vents, and other areas pollen can collect.
- Wash your bedding and rugs in hot water to eliminate dust mites don’t.
- Dust and vacuum often and use a vacuum with a HEPA filter.
- Wear a mask when cleaning and working in your yard.
- Use a neti pot with warm filtered water and sea salt to flush out pollen, dust and dander.
Your acupuncturist may also suggest an herbal formula to help you deal with your allergy symptoms. Herbs are a great addition to your treatments and they don’t create grogginess like some over-the-counter medications. Let your acupuncturist help you develop a safe and effective treatment protocol, so summer allergies don’t leave you hiding inside during these warm months.