Are Winter Allergies Making You Miserable? 3 Things That May Be Causing Winter Allergy Symptoms

Health & Medical Blog

When you think of allergy season, chances are that you think of the spring and summer seasons, when the pollen counts are high and there are any number of outdoor irritants that cause allergy sufferers to sneeze, sniffle, or cough. The same symptoms in the winter time are often attributed to cold and flu season rather than allergies. But winter allergies are real, and those winter cold symptoms you're experiencing may actually be allergy symptoms as well, especially if they seem to come and go depending on where you are. Take a look at some of the winter allergies that could be affecting you.

Pet Dander

Sure, if you have pets, pet dander is something that could affect you year-round. However, if your pets spend much of their time outdoors when the weather is warm, you may be more affected by pet dander during the winter, when it's too cold to let your pets roam outside for long periods of time.

What's more, your home is probably more well-ventilated in the warmer months than it is in the winter. If you keep your windows open during the warmer months but close them to keep the heat in during the winter, you'll end up breathing in more of the pet dander that builds up inside your home during the winter. If your allergy is mild, you may not notice during the spring and summer when your home is well-ventilated. You may want to vacuum your home more often during the winter in order to reduce the dander build-up.

Dust Mites

It's not just your pets that spend more time indoors during the winter. You're likely to stay inside more often yourself. You're also likely to bundle up, and that means pulling blankets and comforters that you don't use during the warmer months out to use during the winter.

All of that means that you have more exposure to dust mites, both because of the additional time you spend indoors and because of the buildup of dust mites that can occur on blankets and bedding that you haven't used since last year. And if you're sensitive to dust mites, that can result in a lot of coughing, sneezing, wheezing, and other allergy symptoms. As with pet dander, dealing with a dust mite allergy requires extra vacuuming and cleaning during the winter months. When you bring blankets and bedding out of storage, put them through the washing machine on a hot cycle before you use them, and if possible, air dry them outdoors.

Smoke From The Fireplace

There's nothing cozier than settling down in front of a roaring fire on a cold winter night – unless you're allergic to wood smoke, in which case, you could just end up with itchy, watery eyes, a sore throat, and a nasty cough. Unfortunately, wood fires aren't for everyone.

Smoke from wood fires can not only aggravate allergies, but they can also trigger asthma attacks in some asthma sufferers. If settling down in front of your fireplace causes you to feel worse instead of better, it may be time to look into alternative methods of heating your house.

Allergies can affect you no matter what time of year it happens to be. If you're experiencing allergy symptoms, allergy testing at a clinic like Dino Peds can help you identify the allergen so that you can remove it from your home or avoid it. Ask your doctor about testing to help you understand your symptoms. 


5 October 2018

Help Others Make Health Decisions when They Cannot

One day I was playing a game of basketball with a friend, and the friend I was playing ball with tripped and took a hard fall to the ground. He hit his head hard, but he insisted he was okay and just wanted to go home and take a nap. I knew in my heart that he was not thinking clearly, and I didn't feel right letting him go home. I talked him into letting me take him to the hospital, and after some tests, it was determined he had a bad concussion. The doctors told me that if I had let him go home and sleep, things could have taken a turn for the worse. I created this blog to remind everyone to look out for each other after injuries. Not everyone thinks clearly after a head injury, and just being a good friend could save a life.