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Some people assume allergy season is over once the weather cools down, but many individuals suffer from winter allergies that create a variety of unpleasant symptoms. People suffer from winter allergies due to allergens inside of the home. Mold, dust mites and pet dander can all cause problems. Here are seven winter allergy symptoms and tips on how people can get them under control.
Exposure to household mold can cause mild symptoms such as itchy eyes or more severe symptoms like coughing. People who have a persistent cough are likely breathing in dust or mold particles. In some cases, people who have a lingering cough also have a sore or irritated throat.
Mold spores thrive in damp areas and can spread throughout a house quickly, creating unsafe living conditions. Homeowners or renters need to have their mold problem assessed by a professional. Although surface mold is easy to remove, it is much more difficult to remove mold growing inside of walls or heating ducts. People should leave serious mold removal jobs to a team of trained professionals.
It is common for people to get a scratchy, sore throat during the winter season due to dry indoor air conditions. A sore throat can also be an allergy symptom triggered by dust mites or mold in the home. People who wake up with a sore throat each day should place a humidifier in their bedroom to see if the moisture eliminates the problem. If the sore throat is a result of an allergic reaction warm drinks or throat drops can provide temporary relief, but the problem will continue until the household is free from allergens.
Exposure to pet hair and dust mites can irritate the nasal passages and cause people to start sneezing. They may sneeze occasionally or have an uncontrollable sneezing fit that does not stop until they get some fresh air. People who have winter allergies may also become stuffed up or have a runny nose.
Those who want to prevent sneezing caused by allergies should try to reduce or eliminate dust and pet dander from their living area. They should vacuum their home several times per week and keep any furry pets groomed to reduce shedding. They can lower the incidence of allergic reactions by changing their bedding on a frequent basis and using dust resistant mattress and pillow covers.
People who are allergic to animals may have an allergic reaction when exposed to pet saliva. They may develop an itchy, painful rash after a dog or cat licks their skin. Many people who are sensitive to animal saliva also experience other pet allergy symptoms like watery eyes, stuffy nose and sneezing.
It is difficult for people to avoid animal dander when living with pets. People who must live in a household that includes pets should keep the animals off furniture and out of their bedroom. Pet owners can take antihistamines to alleviate allergy symptoms.
Individuals who have ongoing sinus problems may suffer from winter allergies. Those who experience eye and nose irritation have itchy, sore eyes and nasal passages. Using a dehumidifier can reduce these irritating symptoms. By reducing household humidity, people can decrease the amount of dust mites and mold in the home. An air purifier that includes a HEPA filter effectively removes allergens from the air providing relief for allergy sufferers.
People who are prone to winter ear infections or congestion may be having an allergic reaction to dust, mold or other allergy triggers. Children, teens and adults who are experiencing ear pain should visit an Ear, Throat and Nose Specialist. Many health professionals believe there is a link between chronic winter ear infections and allergies.
People who feel pain or pressure along the sides of their nose, underneath or in between their eyes or above their eyebrows are experiencing sinus problems. Some people who experience facial pain think they simply have a headache, but if the pain or pressure persists, it is likely due to a sinus infection or allergic reaction.
Some people also experience ear pain due to sinus pressure. Pain and discomfort caused by sinus pressure can make it difficult for people to enjoy life. Those who suffer from allergy related sinus pressure should do their best to reduce household allergens, but they should also visit a medical professional who can offer expert advice.
Since winter allergy symptoms are similar to flu symptoms, it is sometimes difficult for people to tell whether they have allergies or the flu. Unlike allergies, the flu does not last very long. Flu symptoms often include fever, aches and chills, which are not winter allergy symptoms.