So you're out at a picnic at a beautiful meadow. The air smells of honeysuckle and a soft breeze blows, lifting your hair away from your face. You inhale deeply to take in the rich countryside air and... start sneezing.1... 2... 5... 10! They just won't stop. Before long, your face turns red, your eyes water, your nose starts running, and you feel itchy all over. Why did that happen? It was most definitely an allergic reaction, probably due to the pollen in the air.
So what are allergies? An allergy is your immune system's way of reacting to all those substances that it considers harmful to the body. These substances (foreign bodies) are called allergens. When the body perceives these foreign bodies, it releases chemicals in the form of antibodies into the body to attack and destroy these foreign bodies. It is these chemicals that cause the tell tale reactions of a runny nose and watery eyes. The more stronger and severe allergies can also cause difficulty in breathing, chest pains, and fainting spells. These are called anaphylactic reactions. The most common antibody that the immune system releases is histamine.
The bad news is that allergies are here to stay. You cannot eliminate them forever. Every time the body perceives a harmful foreign substance in your system, it will release antibodies and the same reaction can be expected each time. The only thing that one can do to get rid of allergies is to get rid of the symptoms that cause these reactions.
Getting Rid of Allergies
Identify the Problem
Try to figure out what is causing the allergic reaction. When you have a reaction, think about the things you did just before you had one―maybe it is something new that you've introduced in your diet, or maybe it is the spring and the open window in your room has caused the pollen to filter in. Study your diet and lifestyle and see if you can identify what is causing the reactions. Many times, allergies are caused by ragweed, pollen, animal dander (the skin that is shed) or food products like nuts, milk etc. Try and eliminate the causes one by one and see the effect.
Eliminate the Problem
Once you identify the reason, try to eliminate it. Like if it's a certain dairy product that brings on the reaction, don't eat it. Or close the window that brings the pollen in. Or if it's the material of the clothes, opt for different material clothes. Eliminating the source of the problem will stop the problem completely. But sometimes this is not feasible. Like if you have a reaction to pollen, you cannot cut down all the trees or cannot cover your nose at all times. Then there is no choice but to take medication for it.
Pop a Pill
When you experience these symptoms, talk to your doctor and he will probably prescribe an antihistamine for you. Antihistamines are medicines that counter the effect of the histamines that are produced by the body. These histamines, when produced, will not only get rid of the allergens, but because they are produced in such large numbers, will affect the body tissue as well, causing all the reactions. Thus the antihistamines will get rid of the sneezing and coughing. Before taking an antihistamine drug, however, a doctor should be consulted because some can produce side effects like drowsiness.
Boost your Immune System
Boosting your immune system will make it stronger and help you rid the allergies quicker. Take vitamin and food supplements for it. Vitamins will increase the count of antihistamines in the body. So also, certain foods like grape seed will boost the immune system and help in getting rid of allergies fast.
One can opt for an allergen immuno-therapy. In this, one is injected with allergen doses. These will help in reducing allergies by controlling the way in which the immune system reacts to the allergies. This option should only be used when all others have been proven ineffective.
Get Rid of Allergies Naturally
Some people do not believe in taking medicines and would rather depend on natural cures to get rid of allergies fast. Here are some ways for allergy relief.
- Have a diet consisting of fresh fruits and vegetables. This will boost your immune system naturally.
- Increase the quotient of Vitamin C in your body by eating foods like grapes, citrus fruits, and lemon juices.
- Reduce consumption of processed and junk food as they may lead to allergic reactions and try to maintain a highly nutritious diet.
- Have ginger tea which will help in increasing the circulation of blood in the body and thereby combating breathing problems.
- Use a nasal spray to clear the airway which might have accumulated a mucus lining.
- Boil water with stinging nettles which are rich in Vitamins C and A, potassium, and iron. This will soak in all the essence. Drink this twice a day to combat allergies.
- Eat fresh foods consisting of the colors green, black, red, and yellow everyday.
- Increase intake of foods like onions, leeks, dark green leafy vegetables, beans, sweet potatoes, and radish.
- Avoid junk, frozen, and instant foods along with alcohol and soda.
- An easy solution is to prepare broth or soup everyday and include a lot of vegetable and pulses in it.
Having allergies is a very common phenomenon. Some people suffer from several allergic reactions at the same time. Granted, allergies can get very stressful, irritating, and hamper your day-to-day life, but it is possible to get rid of these and continue to carry on with normal activities, without it causing too much of a hindrance.