Spring, is the season when most of us want to spend more time outdoors, doing activities that allow us to enjoy more hours of sunshine and good weather. But on the other hand, it is the feared season for those who suffer from pollen allergy. It’s the most uncomfortable season of the year for them because it’s practically synonymous of suffering from nasal congestion, irritation of the eyes, tearing or sneezing (some of the most common symptoms) for days or weeks.
What is an allergy?
What we commonly call allergy is the way our body reacts to contact with pollen (or the allergen in particular). Our defense system, the immune system, identifies pollen as an invader and starts producing antibodies. These antibodies travel to the cells of our body and provoke a reaction that causes the symptoms in the nose, skin, eyes, lungs etc. (If you want more information about the immune response you can check the report of the European Academy of allergy and clinical immunology ).
Treatments for pollen allergy
People with pollen allergy or other allergies have various treatment options which could be:
– treat the symptoms with the medication prescribed by the doctor to relieve the symptoms
– avoid as much as possible the contact with the element that causes allergy.
– Immunotherapy or vaccines. The patient takes small doses of the allergen (drops under the tongue or injections) with the objective that the body finally tolerate it.
If we plan to travel especially during this season it will be especially useful to know the situation and allergen levels in our destination. If you are visiting Barcelona you can check the levels of pollen and spores. Before you travel, ask your allergist about recommendations regarding your destination and don’t forget to add the treatment prescribed by your doctor in the luggage with enough doses for all days.