What You Can Do About Your Ragweed Allergy

If you’re one of Ragweed’s chosen ones, you may be about as miserable right about now as I am with my Poison Oak. Don’t you just hate it when Mother Nature throws curveballs?  I honestly believe I’ll smell like Calamine for the rest of my life.

Ragweed Allergies

Of Americans who are allergic to pollen-producing plants, 75 percent are allergic to ragweed. People with allergies to one type of pollen tend to develop allergies to other pollens as well.
People with ragweed allergy may also get symptoms when they eat cantaloupe and banana. Chamomile tea, sunflower seeds and honey containing pollen from Compositae family members occasionally cause severe reactions, including shock. – Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America

Ragweed Allergy symptoms include eye irritation, runny nose, stuffy nose, puffy eyes, sneezing, and inflamed, itchy nose and throat. Sounds like a lot of fun.

Below are specific things you should and should not be doing to make your life with this particular allergy more bearable.

  • Track the pollen count in your area. You can call the National Allergy Bureau at (800)-9-POLLEN or go to www.aaaai.org.  You’ll be better informed when the pollen count is particularly high – cluing you in to just hit the couch and watch a Johnny Depp marathon.
  • When driving or riding in a car, use the AC as oppossed to the windows.
  • Use an air conditioner at home with a HEPA (high efficiency particulate air) filter attachment when the pollen count is high. This will remove pollen from the indoor air.  Again, keep the windows up.
  • Don’t dry your clothes on a clotesline – pollen will hitchike inside.
  • Take antihistamine medications.  Antiinflammatory nose sprays or drops are also helpful and come without the side effects of some antihistamines.
  • If you’re hit particularly hard, you might consider seeing your doctor about allergy shots.
  • I have no idea, whatsoever, what the corelation is, but experts say that those who are suffering from season allergies should avoid bananas, cucumbers, honey (made with pollen), Chammomile tea, sunflower seeds, and zucchini.
  • For the best results, you should actually start taking antihistamines, such as Claritin, Zyrtec, Allergra, or Xyzal BEFORE allergy symptoms appear.  So, if you suffer from hay fever or ragweed, start taking one of these pills each morning.  Doing so may just keep your symptoms at bay.

I came across something interesting while reading about Ragweed, allergies, hay fever, and other seasonal miseries.  People who suffer from allergies such as ragweed often think that moving to the beach or heading out west will be their salvation from sneezing.  The fact is, doctors tell us that people who make this type of move may, indeed, feel better during the next season.  During months when they normally would have been red, sneezing, and miserable – they find themselves without a single complaint.  The problem is, if someone is allergy sensitive, they’ll actually develop allergies to their new local plants in a few years.

So, put away your Mountain and Ocean brochures, close the windows, take your medicine, and have a cup of coffee. 

*** Here’s another useful link: Best Antihistamines for Allergies

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are disrespectful, offensive, or off-topic.

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5 thoughts on “What You Can Do About Your Ragweed Allergy

  1. I have a skin allergy to ragweed (from a test I had done), but I never seem to be affected by it. I have several different allergies including some foods and I find that antihistamines work well to keep them at bay, but I would not advise anyone to have them everyday for a year, as you can develop a resistance to them. You may have to take them every second day or even change every season.

  2. Kate, great advice. It’s been my experience that taking too many antihistamines produces a lot of negative side effects. (At least with the ones I’ve used.)

    They can leave you feeling tired, which is expected I guess, but they can also make you feel blue when there’s absolutely no reason! Hate that.

  3. I moved from Baltimore to Santa Fe about 7 years ago. Allergies out here are a little deinerfft so its hard to say what you will be sensitive to. My wife who never had allergies gets crippled for a week or so every year when the Juniper first blooms. Depending on who you believe,the Juniper that blooms here is the same as the Cedar that blooms in TX and AZ, regardless there does seem to be a great deal of overlap in sensitivites.In town there are much fewer trees and the building canyons tend to blow pollen out in fairly short order but there is still an uncomfortable period (late Feb thru early Mar) but not as bad as out here where we live surrounded by acres of Junipers. I had mild hayfever/ragweed issues in MD but out here I get a little Juniper discomfort but get hit hard by Chamisa a little pale green bush with yellow flowers, I actually call it ragweed of the desert’ and it is no fun. It can bloom almost anytime it isn’t below freezing and peaks after spring melt and our monsoon season (Sept) with 2 pretty large blooms a year.All in all the air quality is significantly better for me (I have chronic weak lungs from lots of childhood pneumonia), but my allergies are worse and my wife’s are a LOT worse. Another issue here is UV, we are close to 7000 feet depending on where you live (a couple hundred feet in either direction) and that surprises a lot of people when they visit.