The best way to prevent allergic rhinitis (hay fever) is to avoid the allergen. It is not always possible to control the environment, to eliminate and/or avoid allergens; however, minimizing or avoiding exposure to the allergens can minimize the signs and symptoms of your allergic reaction.
Once you have identified your allergies, take the following steps to help control your allergies:
Avoiding exposure to Pet Dander:
- You may need to give away your pets or keep them outside, because they bring pollen and dander from the outside.
- Create No-Pet Zones: Keep family pets out of certain rooms, like your bedroom.
- Bathe pets frequently (if necessary), to remove the pet dander.
Avoiding exposure to Dust mites:
- Reduce dust mites by getting rid of carpets (hard floors accumulate less dust), drapes and feather pillows, were dust mites tend to live and breed.
- Reduce the risk of dust mites by using an anti-allergy mattress cover, bed cover and pillows, and by avoiding padded headboards where dust mites can breed.
- Keep the humidity low and dust often with a damp cloth.
- Clean the house frequently, preferably with a vacuum that has a high-efficiency particular air (HEPA) filter or a central air system with an outdoor exhaust.
Avoiding exposure to Mold:
- Avoid damp areas, such as basements, and keep bathrooms and other mold-prone areas clean and dry.
- Clean shower curtains, bathroom windows, damp walls, areas with dry rot and indoor trashcans.
- Remove houseplants
- Don’t carpet bathrooms or other damp rooms
- Use mold-proof paint instead of wallpaper.
- Throw away old books, shoes and bedding
- Use a dehumidifier.
Have a Healthy Home with Certified Asthma & Allergy Friendly™ products:
The Asthma & Allergy Friendly™ Certification Program is an independent certification program created to scientifically test and identify consumer products that help create a healthier home environment for people with asthma and allergies. Asthma and allergies strike nearly one in four Canadians. Reducing the sources of asthma and allergy triggers and avoiding exposure to allergens is a cornerstone of modern care guidelines for these chronic diseases. Purchasing products which are Certified Asthma & Allergy Friendly™ will help you have a healthy home.
Reduce the exposure of seasonal pollens by:
- Shower or bathe before bedtime to wash off any pollen and other allergens that may have collected in your hair and on your skin.
- Avoid going outside, especially on dry, windy days
- Keep doors and windows closed to reduce the amount of pollen that can get in the home
- Staying indoors when the pollen counts are high
- Avoid drying your clothes outside during high pollen times, especially early morning and early evening
What’s a Pollen Count?
Pollen counts measure how much pollen is in the air and can help people with allergies determine how bad their symptoms might be on any given day. Pollen counts are usually higher in the morning and on warm, dry, breezy days, and lowest when it’s chilly and wet. Although not always exact, the local weather report’s pollen count can be helpful when planning outside activities. You can monitor your local pollen count here.
Discuss the best medication for treating your allergies with your healthcare provider:
In some cases, you may not even have identified exactly what causes your allergic reaction. It may be helpful to make a note of what the symptoms are and when they occur before discussing it with your healthcare provider.
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