Allergy season has arrived in many parts of the country. Of course in some areas, it never ever goes away.
Allergies can manifest themselves in many different ways. If you suffer from inhalant allergies your first sign is often itchy water eyes followed by sneezing.
For me I get a very scratchy throat, my eyes itch and then I may start to sneeze – as many as a dozen times in a row!!
The nose runs and you may have post nasal drip. In return for that you have a constant tickle in your throat and start to cough. The cough can proceed, if not controlled, to eventually produce bronchitis.
When I was growing up, I always thought I was getting a ‘spring’ or ‘fall’ cold but now realize it was that I had allergies and no one ever realized it.
This is the so called ‘Seasonal’ allergies or in the fall commonly called ‘Hay fever’ even though hay may not be the causing factor.
There are other forms of allergies too. Food and contact allergies will act differently and the body will have a different response.
Some folks develop hives or swelling of the areas affected. Some can be life threatening as in the case of allergic reactions to seafood – where the throat swells immediately or like my mother who was allergic to bee stings (contact with the bee’s venom) and would also swell and have difficulty breathing.
Both are very serious and most of the time will require medical intervention in an emergency room.
Yet others will develop eczema (see the last newsletter for more information about this) or psoriasis as a more chronic allergic form. Still others may develop hives or other skin rashes.
The good news is that it means your body is paying attention to foreign substances that it thinks are attacking it. Your immune system goes into hypermode and over reacts. Unfortunately it is not good news either as it actually is bringing your bodies defenses down.
If and when a ‘real’ invader attacks your bodies reserves may be too depleted to put up a real fight!
So, we need to get things under control so the body gets on the right track. Essential oils are wonderful in their ability to help the body balance itself at the cellular level.
So not only can the essential oils give you a wonderful enjoyment of smelling all those beautiful scents but they get your chemical makeup back into alignment. Then your body immune system can fight where it needs to fight.
Now, onto a few essential oils that are known to help with inhalant or airborne allergens in varying degrees.
Some of the best known ones are the Chamomiles – Roman and German both have anti-histamine properties and are typically the first choice.
Other essential oils include Helichrysum, Lavender, Blue Tansy, Tarragon, Yarrow, Geranium, Patchouli, Clove bud, and Niaouli.
Then there are others that may work just for you but no one else.
These essential oils may give you some relief too and include: Bergamot, Juniper berry, Lemon, Lavandin, Orange, Palmarosa, Rosemary, Sage, Spikenard, Hyssop, Rose, Ravensara and Peppermint.
Although I think many of these help with the symptoms caused or related to the allergic reactions instead of actually stopping the reaction.
Try a few oils in a personal inhaler and inhale several times a day.
Roman Chamomile – 4 drops (you may want to try German Chamomile or Helichrysum in place of the Roman Chamomile)
Lemon – 3 drops
Lavender 3 drops
Blend these in an amber bottle and then place a drop or two on a tissue or place several drops in an inhaler.
If you have nasal congestion that is causing you grief add one drop of Peppermint to the above mix.
One of the things that helps this time of year is to start using some of the anti-histamine essential oils prior to the season actually starting.
If you know what you are allergic to watch the daily pollen counts that are offered in many newspapers and there are also several websites that can notify you what plants are bothersome in different areas of the country.
For me, I have found that in the spring before the conifer type trees start to pollinate I simply need to use just a little Lavender and if my sinuses start to hurt – sniff a little Peppermint.
This is the easiest for me. Although if we don’t get enough spring rains then I may need to use a little Roman Chamomile – it works great for me. Just a little inhale in the morning and night for a few days and I’m not bothered.
For those of you that have more severe reactions you might want to try a blend of a few of those listed above or we also have a wonderful synergy blend - our Allergy Tamer blend that is made of 5 of the best known allergy fighter essential oils.
If your allergies have gotten the upper hand, then you may need to try some of the symptomatic relief essential oils. Please see our Past Newsletters, Recipes Index or Health and Beauty Index to help find relief for common allergy symptoms such as Congestion, headaches, sinusitis, and the list continues.
Start now and be prepared before the pollen starts to fly. Oh and beware – Hay fever season is later in the summer so you need to mark your calendars now to start your essential oil regime about 2 weeks before that season starts too!
Eucalyptus globulus – 3 drops
Lavender – 2 drops
Peppermint – 1 drop
Rosemary – 2 drops
Mix all essential oils together. Then add 1-3 drops to a personal inhaler or several drops in a fan or other room diffuser.
We strongly discourage the use of tealight diffusers or candles when you are suffering with respiratory conditions as the small amount of soot produced by open flames can cause additional irritation to already irritated noses, throats and etc.
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