Right now, the world is focused on the coronavirus pandemic. Because of that, other illnesses or discomforts that can arise, particularly as the seasons continue changing, are forgotten. If you find yourself sneezing more often and rubbing at stinging eyes, you’re probably suffering from seasonal allergies from the new blooms and high pollen count. To keep your allergies in check, here are some tips you can incorporate into your everyday routine to keep your allergies at bay.
1. Keep tissues on hand
For a runny nose that won’t quit, there’s only one solution: Tissues. It sounds simple enough to grab a pack when you’re already at the grocery store (the only place most of us are going these days), but the right ones won’t irritate your skin or crumble to shreds with use. Our favorite are the Puffs Ultra Soft Facial Tissues, which feel more like a lightweight handkerchief than an easily-tearable piece of cotton.
Get the Puffs Plus Mega Facial Tissue on Target for $1.99
2. Relive your sinuses with a neti pot
When your sinuses feel congested, you have post-nasal drip, or you feel like your nasal passages are too dry, try a neti pot. This one from NeilMed comes with 50 premixed saline packets that, when mixed with filtered, distilled, or previously boiled water, moisturize to prevent nasal irritation. Once you’ve prepped the water and mixed it with the solution in the provided teapot, lean sideways over the sink, place the spout in the top nostril, and slowly pour. You should then see the water escape the lower nostril and run into the sink.
Get the NeilMed NasaFlo Neti Pot Sinus Relief on Target for $13.99
3. Take a shower as soon as you come indoors
With coronavirus in mind, it’s not a bad idea to put your dirty clothes in your hamper and hop right in the shower, but this is especially true if you suffer from environmental allergies. In the time that you went outside for a walk, you likely picked up pollen on your skin and clothing that you don’t want to spread around your home. Rinsing off in the shower is even more important before bedtime so you don’t spread allergens on your sheets and pillows.
4. Put your dirty laundry in a lidded hamper
Speaking of putting your clothes in a laundry basket right when you get inside, we also suggest using a hamper with a lid to further prevent the spread of airborne allergens that came inside on your clothing. Try to keep on top of washing your laundry during peak allergy season, too, as the most effective way to get rid of allergens like dog dander, pollen, and dust mites on clothing is to wash them in hot water.
Shop lidded hampers and baskets on Wayfair
5. Use allergy covers on your bedding
If allergens do make it into your bedroom, you’ll be better prepared if you use allergy covers on your mattress and pillows. Ones like the Allerease Maximum Mattress Protector and Pillow Protector claim to block out dust mites, pollen, bed bugs, pet dander, and household allergens with a soft fabric casing that zippers shut over your pillows and mattress.
6. Stick with washable rugs, if any at all
Rugs can warm up a home and make it feel cozier, but just as with clothing and bedding, allergens infiltrate your rugs. If you can roll up your rugs and store them properly during the time of year when your allergies are the worst, perfect. If you can’t, though, we suggest switching to a machine-washable rug from Ruggable. Not only do we love how easy they are to pop in the washing machine, but also that there are hundreds of designs to choose from and plenty of size options to fit any room in your house.
Shop rugs on Ruggable starting at $109
7. Skip fresh flowers
As beautiful as fresh flowers are, they can introduce pollen to your home and cause your allergies to flare up. If you’re looking to get crafty during quarantine, you can make up a paper bouquet for your table centerpiece using the Small Tissue Paper Peony Flowers kit from Paper Source. They’ll bring cheeriness to your home but help you keep the pollen outside.
Get the Small Tissue Paper Peony Flowers on Paper Source for $9.95
8. Bathe your pets often
As lovable as your pets are, they may (innocently) exacerbate your allergies by bringing irritants into your home, just as you do when you come in from the outdoors. But your furry friend is likely not wearing clothes that they can shed. To avoid sneezing fits during snuggle time, regularly bathe your pet and consider using a hypoallergenic shampoo. For dogs, Reviewed editor Amy Roberts recommends the Nature’s Miracle Supreme Odor Control Hypoallergenic Dog Shampoo and Conditioner, which is soap-free and claims to rid dogs of odor and allergens without ingredients like parabens, dyes, and fragrance that may irritate your pooch’s (and your) skin.
Get the Nature’s Miracle Supreme Odor Control Hypoallergenic Dog Shampoo & Conditioner on Chewy for $3.88
9. Use your face mask for chores
We’re all wearing face masks out of the house these days in an effort to stop the spread of the coronavirus, but these masks could come in handy when you’re doing chores around the house. Next time you’re dusting the house or mowing the lawn, slip your face mask on to act as a protective barrier between you and allergens. You can find masks on Etsy, including this Organic Cotton Double Layer Cotton Face Mask, which comes in three different sizes to better fit your face.
Get the Organic Cotton Double Layer Cotton Face Mask on Etsy for $25
10. Run an air purifier
Air purifiers can majorly reduce allergens in your home, and as a result, the amount of discomfort you feel. The key is finding one that contains a HEPA or True HEPA filter, which can remove most of the airborne allergens in your air, including pet dander and plant pollen. We recommend the Winix 5500-2 because it uses a True HEPA filter that’s easy to replace (it’s due for a replacement every 12 months) and it gets rid of odor along with allergens. To get the most use out of it, put it in the room where you spend most of your time, run it often, keep up with replacing the filter, and make sure your windows are shut while it’s running—shutting your windows is a good practice for someone with allergies, anyway.
Get the Winix 5500 2 Air Purifier on Target for $159.99
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Prices were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.