Spring is a wonderful time of year, full of blooming flowers, warm sunshine and plenty of outdoor activities. With pollen in full swing, spring also means the start of another allergy season in the Gulf South.
Allergies can make it difficult for children to enjoy the outdoors, but with a little bit of preparation and some smart choices, they can still have a fun and healthy spring, including all the festivals and fun to be found this time of year.
Identify Allergy Triggers
The first step in managing spring allergies is to identify the triggers that cause them. Common allergens during this time of year include pollen from trees, grass and flowers. Mold spores and dust mites can also be a problem. Kids with allergies may experience symptoms such as sneezing, runny nose and itchy eyes, which might resemble pink eye.
To minimize exposure to allergens, parents should keep an eye on local pollen counts and plan outdoor activities accordingly. On days when pollen counts are high, it may be better to stay inside or limit time spent outdoors. Keep windows and doors closed, especially in the early morning when pollen counts are often the highest.
Encourage Good Hygiene
Good hygiene is always crucial and especially for allergy sufferers during spring. Encourage frequent hand washing, especially after being outside or playing with pets. This will help to remove any allergens that may have collected on skin or clothes. Shower and change clothes after spending time outdoors, particularly on high pollen count days.
Consider Allergy Medications
If your child is still experiencing allergy symptoms despite these precautions, allergy medications may be necessary. Check with your child’s pediatrician to get their recommendation on what’s best for your child.
Over-the-counter antihistamines can help to relieve sneezing, runny nose and itchy eyes. Nasal sprays can also be effective in reducing inflammation in the nasal passages. If your child has asthma, make sure they have a rescue inhaler on hand in case of an attack.
Spring allergies can be a challenge, but they don’t have to keep your child indoors. With some planning and smart choices, your little one can still enjoy all the fun that spring has to offer.
Could it Be COVID-19?
The symptoms of COVID-19 can be mistaken for allergies. When in doubt, get tested. Check out our infographic comparing symptoms of COVID, colds, flu and allergies.