In spring, all things on earth revive and plants sprout. Microorganisms and flowers all come out. Due to the specificity of the human body and the spring environment, people might get allergy symptoms such as skin pruritus and sneeze, when pollen or microorganisms happen to reach them. And it is dry in spring. All these make spring the season of allergy.
Why do some people have allergies?
Healthy people have a set of protective, physiological system in their bodies — the immune system. When foreign substances (also known as antigens) such as certain pathogenic bacteria invade the human body, lymphocytes (a type of white blood cell) in the body can produce immunoglobulin (Ig), or called antibody (Ab), to neutralize or attack the antigen.
But in some cases, the immune system reacts to something that’s usually harmless to most people. In another word, the immune system may mistakenly believe a non-toxic substance is harmful. When this occurs, you may have allergic reactions. Substances that can trigger an allergy are referred to as allergens, and some of the most common allergens include certain foods, dust, mold, plant pollen, animal dander, and drugs.
The first time an allergen invades the body, cells in the immune system — plasma cells — produce and release IgE antibodies to that allergen. These IgE antibodies will bind to the allergen and then to another type of immune cells — mast cells. The IgE-coated mast cells are therefore sensitized to the allergen. The next time the same allergen invades, these mast cells will be activated and release powerful, inflammatory chemical mediators, including histamine, cytokines, granulocyte macrophage colony-stimulating factors, leukotrienes, heparin, and many proteases, which will lead to the characteristic symptoms of allergy.
But why allergies are mostly in spring?
Pollen, dust, swift of seasons, wrong time of physical exercise, plush and stuffed toys, and temperature changes are the main reasons.
In spring, tiny pollen particles spread here and there. These tiny particles spread in the air and fly around with the flow of air, and some of them will be inhaled and absorbed by the skin at the same time. Then people who are susceptible to pollen allergies will easily develop allergic reactions.
Dust allergies are usually a type of allergic reaction to microorganisms living in the dust and may be the most common form of allergy. Other allergens in the dust may include cotton fiber, fur and all kinds of fibers, and so on.
In spring, the environment is pretty different from others. Due to various environmental factors, bacterial spores and pollen in the air will lead to the release of large amounts of histamine, a compound found throughout the body, leading allergic reactions on the skin.
Usually, trees, grass and flowers release their pollen just after the sunrise, and the pollen concentration in the air reaches the highest point when it is closed to the noon or at earlier afternoon. Allergy sufferers should go out or exercise earlier than that the pollen comes out. Nightfall and evening are the best time for exercise, experts suggest.
Plush and stuffed toys easily get dust gathered and are a common allergen. If some family members have allergic symptoms, it is better to put the toys away.
When susceptible people are in sudden change of temperature, they would feel red or hot on their face. That is a common allergic reaction.
Knowing the cause of spring allergy, we could do some job for prevention of the spring allergy.
Due to flourishing plants and lots of pollen in the spring air, people allergic to pollen can close the windows and change to other ways for fresh air. And it can be helpful to use the air conditioner when driving, to avoid inhaling pollen.
If there are stuffed toys in house, they should be kept clean. And it is better not to use down quilts, down pillows and other down products.
The most important point is to develop a good living habit. If you are allergic to pollen, you had better wash the face after going outside, or wash your nose with light salt brine. And you can also use air cleaner and filter to dislodge the allergens such as pollen, animal feather, or stive inside the house.
To keep a good mood. By the way, mental pressure is also one factor to cause allergy. The body would release histamine (which is the main substance to cause allergy) when facing great pressure. So it is also very necessary to have an optimistic and cheerful mood.
Skin allergy is the most common allergy in spring. But how we do can protect our skin from getting allergic?
First, make sure your skin is well hydrated. Skin easily get stimulated and allergic when lack of moisture. People always think the skin gets allergic when the face gets red. Actually, it does just when you feel tight on your face, which is the beginning of the allergy. When you finish washing your face, apply a moisturizer suitable for you before desiccation.
Lots of people might think more expensive the skincare products are, better they are. Actually, only the suitable products are the best for your skin. People whose skin is prone to allergies should choose a weak acid facial cleanser as well as mild, non-irritating moisturizing products. This can keep your skin moist and avoid losing moisture.
Daily sunscreen job is helpful for allergic skin. Enough protection of the skin is very important outside in spring. Keep the skin from sunlight, ultraviolet, and pollen.
As we know, people easily get agitated in spring. The skin might be affected by this. You can meditate with plant aromatherapy before you go to bed every night. That can help rest your mood and calm the skin.
If you already have allergy symptoms on your skin, you should ease the burden on the skin. Try your best to wash the face with facial cleanser only once in a day and it is better to do it at night. In the morning, just water is enough for the facial cleaning. Avoid the use of alcohol-containing moisturizers. One break in one week is recommended for healthy skin — only doing a facial cleansing, moisturizing, sunscreen and other basic care so that the skin can enjoy free breathing.
But if you have got allergy symptoms, what you need to do?
First, we should stop using any make-up products and observe and do some care job. During this period, avoid stimulating the skin and be careful on the sunscreen. Do not use excessively hot water when doing a facial cleaning.
And it is not suggested to buy and use drugs without doctor’s advise. As the drug might not be right and it is not helpful for the doctor’s diagnosis. We should buy drugs under the doctor’s advise after checking and diagnosis. Then unnecessary suffering can be avoided.
For spring allergy, we have some tips on the diet. Apple, broccoli, fish, garlic, nuts are all helpful.
Apple contains quercetin in its meat. And quercetin is with anti-inflammatory and antihistamine performance which is helpful on the prevention to allergy and asthma. Polyphenols in apples can effectively relieve symptoms of persistent allergic rhinitis.
Broccoli also contains quercetin. Broccoli shoots are rich in sulforaphane, which is a potent anti-inflammatory compound. Enough broccoli shoots may multiplex the level of certain antioxidant enzymes, such as glutathione S-transferase, in the human body. These antioxidant enzymes may provide protection against allergies.
Fish with rich omega-3 fatty acids is much helpful to mitigate seasonal allergy. Eating a diet high in apples and fish may help lower the risk of childhood allergy.
To mention the garlic, a factor has to be known. Just the pungent smell of garlic can keep you away from allergy. It is a natural antibiotic and can resist infections such as viruses, and even allergy. And the quercetin in it can act as an antihistamine drug. The garlic can enhance the immune function of human body and help people resist influenza and allergens.
Nuts are not only a good snack to control hunger, but also to control allergy symptoms. This is because it contains omega-3 fatty acids of high concentration. Thus it has an anti-inflammatory function. It can especially ease the inflammation of tissues around the nose and the throat caused from allergy. But it must be pointed out that some people are allergic to nuts.