Best nasal spray for seasonal allergies

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Best nasal spray for seasonal allergies

Seasonal allergies, sometimes called spring fever, are very common, and can actually happen at any time of the year, not just the spring. The CD

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Seasonal allergies, sometimes called spring fever, are very common, and can actually happen at any time of the year, not just the spring. The CDC says nearly 20 million people have seasonal allergies. The symptoms are roughly the same as those of a cold. The only main difference is that allergies are caused by environmental triggers, not viruses or infections.

If you think you have allergies, you can check with your healthcare provider for some of the best solutions to alleviate your symptoms. But if your main symptoms involve sneezing and a runny nose, nasal sprays might alleviate your allergy symptoms. Read on to find our options for nasal sprays.

According to Healthline, allergies are your immune system’s response to something that is not inherently harmful to your body. People with seasonal allergies, sometimes called hay fever, can get cold-like symptoms such as runny noses, watery eyes, sneezing, coughing, skin irritation, rashes and other symptoms. Serious seasonal allergies can cause systemic reactions like breathing issues or anaphylactic shock. The most common seasonal allergens are mold and pollen, but other common triggers are pet dander, dust mites, smoke and fragrances, such as perfume or cologne.

The first step to reduce the symptoms of seasonal allergies is to avoid their triggers. During the times of year when your allergies are the worst (likely sometime in the spring and fall, the most common allergy seasons), avoid densely pollinated areas, check your home or workplace for mold, and avoid other triggers that may or may not be seasonal. And most importantly, keep windows closed! Allergy triggers are commonly environmental, so keep the pollen from getting inside.

Consider where you live and whether it’s the best place for your allergies. Of course, some people cannot or don’t want to move, despite allergies — just like you might be allergic to your pet, but still love and want to keep them. There are other options.

Clean and vacuum your home frequently to get rid of dust mites and accumulated pet dander, dirt or pollen. Launder your clothes in hypoallergenic detergent, or detergents for sensitive skin. Avoid wearing shoes in your home to keep tracked-in allergens out — you might even want to take a shower when you get home to get rid of allergens in your hair or in your body, and keep them from getting in your house Consider modifying your bedding to something hypoallergenic. Use an air purifier with an allergy filter.

If you’ve done all you can to avoid triggers and still find yourself sneezing and coughing, you may want to consider a nasal spray to help lessen your symptoms.

Nasal sprays containing medication can do the trick for many people who suffer from the cold-like symptoms of seasonal allergies such as a runny nose. Flonase is a time-tested effective product that you can use daily to alleviate sinus symptoms long-term. This is a steroidal spray that is prescription strength but sold over the counter. Some products work better for some people than others, so you may need to experiment with a few steroidal sprays to find the one that works best for you. Nasacort makes a steroid-based spray that users find effective. It claims to work for 24 hours of allergy symptom relief.

As with any medication, these products have some side effects, such as throat and nasal irritation. Since they are a medication, do check with your healthcare provider before starting a steroid. These products used to need a prescription and are now sold over the counter because they are safe, but they are still a drug.

For people who need serious relief but who cannot take steroids, NasalCrom is a non-steroidal spray, which can be used with other allergy medicines and isn’t habit-forming. It doesn’t cause drowsiness like antihistamines can, or jitteriness like steroids can.

There are nasal sprays that offer relief using only natural ingredients, as well. Greensations makes a nasal spray that users find effective. The product’s main active ingredients are horseradish, wintergreen and cayenne. As you can imagine, when spraying the ingredients of spicy foods up your nose, the product creates a brief stinging sensation before clearing your sinuses.

Another nasal allergy relief product using natural ingredients is from Similasan. This one uses grapefruit seed extract and saline and works mainly by lubricating the sinuses — a well-lubricated nasal passage is less likely to be irritated by allergens and won’t swell or react as much. This particular product is not only drug-free, but also vegan and cruelty-free.

Some users say that natural products don’t work for severe allergy symptoms because they clear the sinuses without getting at the causes of the sinus issues.

If you want the simplest solution, use a nasal spray or mist that contains only saline, or salt water. This is a good way to clear out your sinuses and keep them moisturized. Saline is a safe product for anyone because it’s simply salt and water so you can use it without worrying about drug interactions. You can also use a saline spray for kids with stuffy noses.

If you need to clear your nasal passages, but can’t or don’t want to use nasal sprays, there are some other options. Neti pots are a time-tested sinus health practice that involves leaning over a sink and pouring saline or salt water into your nostril, irrigating your nasal passages. The saline needs to be from distilled water in order to avoid possible infection but is often considered the best tactic to help keep your sinuses clean and healthy while flushing out allergy triggers.

Some people find the slow pouring motion of a neti pot messy and unpleasant. Many people prefer a quicker process and go for a sinus rinse, which squirts saline up one nostril and out the other, clearing the passage faster than a neti pot.

If you have moderate to severe allergy symptoms, you may want to consider taking over-the-counter or prescription medications that are in pill form to manage your symptoms. Consider seeing a specialist, such as an allergist or ear, nose and throat doctor, for long-term options, like allergy shots or nasal surgery.

Laura Wheatman Hill is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money.

BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. BestReviews and its newspaper partners may earn a commission if you purchase a product through one of our links.

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