Parent Survival Guide: Helping your family cope with fall allergies

Published: Oct. 7, 2019 at 7:50 PM EDT
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CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - As the days get shorter and the leaves begin to change it’s not only looking a lot more like Fall but feeling like it too.

Especially if you or your family suffers from seasonal allergies.

Local allergist Dr. Thomas Harper says the culprit when it comes to fall allergies are ragweed, pigweed and mold.

“You can have nasal symptoms, runny nose, stuffy nose, sneezing, itchy nose and watery, red eyes,” says Harper.

About 15% of people have some type of allergies Harper said.

According to the CDC, more than 8% of children, roughly 6 million, experience seasonal allergies.

He says the first and best way to deal with them during the Fall is to prevent them by minimizing the exposure to pollen and molds including not being outside long during late morning and afternoon hours, closing windows, and recirculating the air in the car rather than opening the vents.

He says now a days there are a number of over the counter medications that work well for kids and don’t make them drowzy.

He says Claritin, Zyrtec, clarinex and nose sprays like flonase sensimist, nasacort and rhinocort.

He says these medications are good to use for short periods of time like a few months.

“If you need something a little more then you probably need to see an allergist and see what your allergic to,” Harper said.

Harper says an allergist can also give you and your child individualized allergy therapy after doing a skin test to find out which allergens are triggering your symptoms.

He says another option is immunotherapy which are tailored allergy shots that can significantly reduce your sensitivity to your allergy triggers.

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