Winter Allergies vs. a Cold – Am I Sick, or Are These Just Winter Allergies?
Winter is here and you heave a sigh of relief because pollen allergy season is over. But before long, you’re sneezy, sniffly and stuffy again. Do you have a cold, or do you suffer from winter allergies?
Winter allergy symptoms show up when you hibernate indoors due to the cold, inclement weather. The furnace blows warm air through the house along with dust, mold spores and insect particles. These specks get inhaled and promptly set off an allergic reaction. Having your pet inside with you during the cold months may also trigger allergic reactions due to their dander. Common symptoms of winter allergies include coughing and sneezing, itching eyes and a runny nose. These symptoms may last through winter, or they may come and go.
So how do you know whether you have allergies or a cold? Several of the symptoms are the same, but the differences are indicative. A cold usually lasts from 5 to 10 days, and often includes fever, chills and pain. Allergy symptoms last longer, but fever and pain are not included in the symptom list.
Here are a few preventive measures you can take in your home to lessen the symptoms of winter allergies…
- Clear out items that have mold
- Wipe down surfaces with a bleach solution
- Wash the bedding in hot water each week
- Don’t allow your pets into the bedroom or upon the bed
- Use a HEPA filter to draw dust from the air of your home
- Use a dehumidifier to lower and maintain the humidity at 50%
Treatment for fighting winter allergies includes taking medications or injections to control the symptoms. Also drink plenty of fluids to stay hydrated. Inhaling steam from the shower helps many allergy suffers by loosening mucus and relieving congestion. If you don’t receive the relief you need with these measures and medications, visit the Physicians Urgent Care Clinic in Franklin, Tennessee. Our trained health care professionals will check you thoroughly and treat you and your symptoms to give you the relief you seek. We might not be able to control the weather, but we can alleviate your discomfort. Come in today, and start feeling better.