Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Allergies gone crazy

I didn't start having seasonal allergies until high school....or maybe I just don't remember having them as a kid.  But I do remember taking some allergy medicine during the springtime in high school and then for sure when I moved to Boulder for college.  While my hometown is located in the mountains and is very green with pine trees, shrub oak, grass, etc., the greenery in Boulder was different and my allergies went crazy when I lived there.  I remember going out to get my car and it just being covered in a thick yellow dust......pollen, and lots of it.  After a few years in Boulder I noticed that my allergies got better, even though I still took allergy medicine sometimes, they weren't nearly as bad my 3rd and 4th years there in comparison with my 1st and 2nd years.  What did happen in those last few years was that my allergies back home got worse than they had been.  Apparently my body was getting used to the pollen of the different cities and when I switched it up and went to the other town, my immune system went nuts.

My first year in Chile, spent in Viña del Mar, didn't include allergies from what I remember.  Perhaps the sea breeze kept them at bay.  I wouldn't be surprised if it honestly helped.  However since moving to Santiago in 2008, my allergies have bothered me again during the spring. And while this is my 3rd spring in Santiago, they are not getting any better.  In the past, I took lots of allergy medicine.  Last year I bought heaps and heaps of it to keep the headaches, stuffy noses and other no-fun symptoms at bay.  But this spring, along with a lot of the changes I have undergone this year, I am trying to not depend on medicine to keep the symptoms at bay.  I am tired of feeding my body medicines just to cover up symptoms instead of actually trying to fix the problem.  Plus, it just doesn't seem like a good idea to fill our bodies with all these chemicals and toxins that mess up the way our body can naturally heal itself.  

What I have noticed is that my allergies only go crazy in the mornings on my walk to work and in the late afternoons on my way home--basically when I am outside.  At work, since we have the central air system, I don't normally have many symptoms except for the occasional sneeze.  However during this past three-day weekend I was in allergy hell.  Yesterday was the worst of all the days....it was also the hottest in Santiago which may be one of the problems.  I was stuffy, sneezing, and kind of fog-headed most of the day when I was cooking and getting stuff done.  Once I started to relax a bit and read, the symptoms subsided a bit.  

I am now going to start looking for some more natural remedies for allergies.  Yoga seems to be one side of the coin (for the relaxation since stress makes allergies worse), I know some local honey would probably help too (to get my system used to the pollen from the inside out) and there are some herbal medicines that work as anti-histamines.  I might pick one up today just to have when my allergies get overbearing.  There are also some foods that are anti-inflammatory that are supposed to help, so I definitely need to start eating them.  Most of all though I'd like my body to stop reacting so harshly to the allergins. 



Abby said...

I don't have allergies so I can't attest to this personally, but my friends swear by Nutmeg Necklaces. It's just a simple cord with a nutmeg on it and you scratch off a layer like once a day and apparently having it next to your skin helps with allergies. This is the website where my friends buy, it looks sketch but its legit. http://www.palimpalem.com/6/collardenuezmoscada/

I hope you find something that works!

Disclaimer—La Chilengüita is a blog created upon my personal experiences and which expresses my personal opinion that in no way represents the views my employer, family or friends.