Spring brings some of our favorite things: floral prints, days outside in the park (with wine), evening baseball games, and helloooo, longer days! And though we love ourselves some spring, it also brings one of the most annoying things ever along with it: allergies. From being that girl in the office blowing your nose 1,000 times a day to watery eyes ruining all chances at a cat eye, allergies are simply a pain this time of year.
Luckily, there are ways to prevent and deal with allergies if they consume your life. If you’re trying to live your best life this spring without downing medicine daily, we’ve got some natural remedies to assist with the situation!
Need another reason to jump into spring cleaning? Dust and irritants collecting in your closets and corners is one easy way to sniffle your way through June (and beyond). Dedicate an entire day to cleaning out even the deepest corners of your home to eliminate buildup that you’ve likely been breathing in for months.
Bonus points: use non-toxic products while you’re cleaning, as a lot of chemicals in mainstream cleaning supplies can cause allergies (which you might not have even known!).
If your allergies are kickin’, replace your weekday glass of vino with a little wellness tonic instead. Apple Cider Vinegar has major anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties within it, so it’s the perfect base for boosting your immune system and clearing sinuses. Mix a tablespoon of ACV with a dash of ginger, cayenne pepper, maple syrup, and lemon. Drink up anytime you need relief!
Because #duh, it’s a cure-all, right? But for real, moderate exercise can essentially get things moving — and can reportedly produce an anti-inflammatory effect in the nasal passages — leading to relief.
If levels of pollution or pollen are high in your area, consider working out from the comfort of your (clean!) living room. Even 20 minutes should help.
Grandma was onto something — Neti Pots are actually life-savers. They basically work to fully clear your sinuses by streaming a saline solution through your nostril(s). You have to be careful about the exact solution you’re including in the pot, but the results are worth the awkwardness of using a Neti.
Pro tip: Try this in the shower or over a big sink, and don’t wear anything nice while attempting. Things might get messy!
Spring is the season to get a little anal about certain housekeeping items. Other than physically cleaning your space, leave your shoes outside the door when getting home. Wash clothes worn outside often, especially on high-pollen days.
Keep windows and doors closed as much as possible if you’re struggling, too. Again, this is to keep allergens outside, and your home as an oasis from sniffles and runny eyes. If you live with roommates or someone you can’t force to abide by these rules, store an air purifier in your room.
Lastly, try to vacuum every couple days, using a HEPA filter if possible (basically, a filter to remove even more allergens than a basic vacuum).
Diffusing essential oil can help with everything from low energy to headaches to sinus congestion. Peppermint, eucalyptus, oregano, and tea tree oil are among some of the best for clearing up your nasal passage or head fog.
Store this combo of oils and a diffuser at your desk and in your bedroom for allergy-infused days. The smell is a bonus!
Changes to your diet
On top of the wellness elixir mentioned above, there are certain foods that can positively affect your allergies this season. If you’re crazy stuffy, try spicy items like more cayenne, hot ginger, or a plant called fenugreek (which you can get at most health stores). Onion and garlic might also help clear up your head and calm a raw nose.
Next, if things are really bad, ask your doctor to start initial tests based on what you’re eating. Having an unknown allergy to something like dairy might be impacting your health without you knowing — and making spring unbearable.
Acupuncture is a well-known cause for pretty much everything in the wellness world, allergies being one of them. A study actually showed that consistent acupuncture dates helped people with allergy symptoms — likely due to the practice regulating immune responses. If you’ve tried all of the above, consider a session with an acupuncturist (and don’t forget to Instagram it, obviously!).