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Springtime is the best because the blue sky and warm weather bring so much fun and excitement to even the most ordinary day.

Unfortunately, it’s also the worst time for those who suffer from allergy-induced symptoms like itchy watery eyes, headaches, nasal congestion, and postnasal drip. While our instincts may have us reaching for the medicine cabinet at the first sign of trouble, there may be a better, natural, and holistic approach to beating allergies.

Seasonal allergy symptoms are often treated with antihistamines like Loratadine, Cetirizine, Benadryl. The problem is that these medications do not always beat seasonal allergies and may produce many side effects such as a potential for mild dependency, dehydration, headache, dry mouth, drowsiness, digestive problems, and brain fog.

Taking medications such as these also requires the need to remember to take them regularly. It may be more effective to address the root cause of the allergies and how to strengthen the immune system instead.

Cleanse your nose

Pollens adhere to our mucus membranes. Try cleansing your nasal passages with a neti pot, sinus irrigator, or nasal oils.

Consider apple cider vinegar

Apple Cider Vinegar is touted to boost the immune system, help break up mucus, and support lymphatic drainage.

Experts recommend mixing one to two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar with a glass of water and lemon juice three times a day to relieve allergy symptoms.

Air filters

Consider using an air filter in your indoor environment. Many people have allergens floating around the home or office and have no idea how detrimental they can be to their nasal passageways. Consider adding an air filter to your home to lessen your allergy symptoms.

Butterbur

In a 2003 review, butterbur — also known as Petasites hybridus — was found to be as equally effective for itchy eyes as a commonly used oral antihistamine like Benadryl.

Butterbur contains compounds that reduce inflammation. Clinical research has shown that butterbur extract is effective at treating migraines, allergies, and asthma.

Acupuncture

A 2015 review of 13 studies concluded that acupuncture demonstrated positive results for both seasonal and perennial allergic rhinitis.

Honey

Although there’s no scientific evidence to prove it, a popular theory suggests eating locally produced honey. According to the theory, you will lower your allergic reaction over time to the pollen that the bees collect in your area to make their honey. Honey has also been studied as a cough suppressant and may have anti-inflammatory effects

Vitamin C

Practitioners of natural medication suggest taking 2,000 milligrams of vitamin C daily to reduce histamine levels and to give your immune system a boost.

While there’s some evidence that home remedies for allergies can be effective, it’s a good idea to discuss them with your doctor before trying them out. You may try out telemedicine at the comfort of your home or office and get help. 

Get a full diagnosis and listen to your doctor’s suggestions on what’s best for you and your situation.

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Jennifer Billings is the Medical Editor at Medicwell. She has 13 years of experience in internal medicine with a demonstrated history of working in the medical practice industry, both inpatient and outpatient urgent care. She has been published on Medicwell Blog, Medium.com, and is a regular contributor at MedCity News, Physician Family, and Psychology Today.