Combating Myths About Seasonal Allergies03/13/11
SUNDAY, March 13 (HealthDay News) -- With spring allergy season
looming, people need to know the facts about controlling their
allergies, says the American College of Allergy, Asthma and
According to the ACAAI:
- Over-the-counter (OTC) oral antihistamines are less effective
than prescription medicines in controlling a stuffy nose. OTC
antihistamines may control some allergy symptoms but have little
effect on relieving a stuffy nose or inflammation that often occurs
- OTC decongestant nasal sprays are not addictive. However,
overuse leads to the need to use more and more nasal spray in order
to get congestion relief. Don't use an OTC decongestant nasal spray
for more than three days in a row.
- Eating local honey will not combat spring allergies.
- Pollen allergies can lead to food allergies. About one-third of
people with pollen allergies also may react to certain foods
because some pollens and foods have similar proteins. The reaction
is usually mild and may include itchy, tingling mouth, throat or
- Skin tests are more sensitive than blood tests for diagnosing
- Allergy shots are not necessarily more costly or time-consuming
than taking medicine to relieve allergy symptoms. Over time, in
fact, they may reduce an allergic person's health-care costs.
The American Academy of Otolaryngology -- Head and Neck Surgery
has more about
allergies and hay fever.
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