I have noticed it’s that time of year again–lots of searches leading to this one again.
Itchy eyes, ears, nose, throat; runny eyes, nose; stuffy nose; and cough are just a few of the delights that visit us each year, if we are among the pollen afflicted.
It’s Fall Fever. This is a made-up name for the Fall malady that corresponds to Hay Fever which happens in Spring.
And it makes us feel like yuck.
Outside of chemicalizing oneself half to death, what can a person do?
I have found several ways to beat autumn’s ragweed, and I’d love to share them with you.
- The first thing I do is eat honey all year long.
Not just any honey will do. It must be raw, as in uncooked. If the label isn’t boasting, the honey probably isn’t raw.
It also must be native, as in: from the area where you live. Even better is from someone you actually know exists.*
Why? Honey contains minuscule flower parts in various forms, and eating it daily helps me beat my pollen allergies, like an immunization.
- Outside of honey, I avoid all sugars.
Sugar kills immunities, especially the super-processed sugars.
- I take vitamin C. A lot.
Vitamin C is supposed to help with the body’s immunities, so is what I need. Also, for me, the things I’ve read about Vitamin C acting as a mild antihistamine are true.
They say you can tell how much you need when you develop loose stools. They say to cut back a bit if that happens. I usually take 1000-2000 milligrams per day, in divided doses.
(Addendum to the 9/13 posting: One teenager I’ve recently met had sneezing so bad that his nose would bleed regularly. After only two 500 mg doses of Vitamin C, he stopped with both symptoms. Now he uses only one dose per day for upkeep.)
- I wash my face a lot, and even rinse my eyes with artificial tears.
Every time I feel the pollen effect, I wash it off. Notice the above magnified photo of pollen: It looks prickly like cactus. No wonder it bothers sensitive tissues!
After washing, I apply a coating of lotion, or even make-up, to my face to make a barrier between my skin and pollen. That also helps me.
- I stay indoors and keep windows shut.
I know, some cannot do this, but remember, the pollen is out there, not in here.
(Addendum for 9/13: This is especially true during the hours from mid-morning to mid-afternoon.)
- If I find myself still miserable, I use heat on my face.
I run a basin of hot water and dip water from it with a washcloth to hold on my face, renewing as it cools. Or I stand in the shower with hot water spraying on my face.
Do NOT scald yourself!
It takes 10 or 15 minutes, but this wet heat draws out the histamines in my body. Histamines are what cause allergic reactions, what anti-histamines circumvent. As the heat applied to my face draws out the histamines, my face is itchy and my nose grows stuffy. When that itching stops, all the histamines my body could produce are out. Most bodies cannot produce any more for 4 to 8 hours.
Of no itching, sneezing, stuffy nose, watery eyes, etc. It’s plenty of time to take a nap, go to a restaurant, or visit a friend like a normal person.
- If I happen to become wheezy, I drink hot coffee.
Coffee is supposed to be a good emergency substitute for asthma drugs. I don’t have asthma, but hot coffee helps me breathe when the pollen count is high.
There you have it: what I do instead of taking pills. Sometimes, when it really is tough outside, I have to add pills to my regimen, but not often.
I love not being tied to chemicals, all drowsy or else wired to the sky.
*I’m sure it would shock you to learn that it is quite legal for our honey to have corn syrup in it in large percentages, and for it to come from any country in the world. So stick with a local, known source.
Note for 8/10/13: So many folks have searched and found this page using the terms “sneezing first thing in the morning” I’ve decided to add my opinion, for what it’s worth.
I have noticed that the body shuts down some responses and reactions during sleep. Perhaps you have had the experience of sleeping through a loud storm or sleeping with a headache. It probably is a merciful mechanism that allows us sleep in spite of life’s difficulties.
I have noticed that when I am really sick with a cold, I might cough all night, and that might be good, but once I begin to recover, I also begin sleeping more peacefully, which I am sure also is good. However, on those mornings, I must cough lots to make up for lost time.
Could it be that sneezing is the same? We don’t sneeze at night, so we can sleep, but then comes the morning? Just thinking out loud, here.