Spring brings allergiesPublished 7:00am Thursday, March 6, 2014
Spring is fast approaching and with spring comes blooming flowers. While the sight of flowers in bloom can be beautiful, for some it only brings problems.
According to the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, about 50 million people in the United States are affected by nasal allergies.
The amount of people suffering from allergies also leads to 13.4 million visits to doctors, hospital outpatient departments and emergency departments.
Haley Hayes, a Picayune Drug Company pharmacist, said the store sees a large increase in the sales of Singulair and Zyrtec, two over-the-counter allergy medications, starting in March.
Hayes said along with pollen levels, she also sees patients coming in with allergy and respiratory problems because of the temperature fluctuations.
Rick Deben, a nurse practitioner at Picayune Urgent Care, said the urgent care clinic also sees an increase in patients during the spring coming in with symptoms of seasonal allergies, such as sneezing, stuffy nose, runny nose, watery eyes and itching nose.
He recommends visiting your family doctor or an urgent care center when the symptoms start affecting daily routine, sleeping and breathing.
Deben said it is easier now for people to get relief from their allergy symptoms because many medications that used to require a prescription are now available over-the-counter, such as Allegra, Claritin and Zyrtec.
He said Nasacort, a nasal spray that also used to require a prescription, is now offered over the counter and can be helpful in relieving symptoms.
Hayes recommends patients with severe allergies take Claritin to keep the symptoms at bay.
“It can usually keep allergies at bay for most patients,” Hayes said.
Deben added that sometimes persistent issues can lead to sinus and ear infections.
The American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology said if a person is buying new over-the-counter medications constantly and not seeing any results, they should consult the advice of an allergist who may be able to recommend other treatments to help relieve the suffering.