Nearly 55 percent of the population of the United States suffers from some kind of allergy. For a large percentage of these people, those allergies are seasonal. Seasonal allergies are reactions caused by plant matter such as pollen, mold, or grass. Often referred to as hay fever, these allergies show symptoms called rhinitis. These symptoms can include congestion, sneezing, watery eyes, itchy nose, runny nose, itchy eyes, itchy ears, and tingling or itchy feeling in the roof of the mouth. People with allergies are also more likely to develop a condition known as sinusitis. This is a lingering inflammation of the hollow sinus passages that extend behind the cheekbones, behind the nose, and around the eyes. This condition can cause symptoms including headache, congestion, nasal discharge, fever, pressure in the face, pain in the sinuses, and a persistent cough.
While seasonal allergies are not an illness and cannot be treated by medications generally used to treat illnesses such as antibiotics, they can make your parent truly miserable. Allergies can make your parent feel terrible, which can discourage him from being active and enjoying the spring season. Finding ways in your home care efforts to help him cope with these allergies can ensure a higher quality of life as he ages in place.
Some ways that you and your parent’s in home health care services provider can help your parent cope with seasonal allergies this spring include:
• Be aware of them. Before you are going to be able to help your parent deal with allergies you must acknowledge that they are there. Many people are under the assumption that allergies do not impact seniors or that if they did not start when the person was younger, they will not develop. The truth is that allergies can impact people of any age, and they can develop later in life.
• Talk to his doctor about them. It is easy for a doctor to overlook potential allergies when he is focusing on the larger chronic health issues that your parent faces. Make sure that you talk to your parent’s doctor about the allergy symptoms that he has been experiencing so that he can help you to devise a course of treatment and management to ease them.
• Know the dangers. Allergies are not an illness, but they can have a serious impact on your parent’s health. If your aging parent is already dealing with cardiovascular issues, congestion, coughing, and sneezing can be very dangerous. Make sure that you are treating allergies aggressively so that your parent can avoid potentially devastating consequences.
• Be careful about medications. Talk to your parent’s doctor before he takes any type of allergy medication, including over the counter remedies. Many of these medications cause symptoms such as drowsiness and dizziness. This can increase the risk that your parent will fall, and may also interact with other medications.
• Ease the symptoms. If your parent is dealing with the symptoms of allergies, help him to deal with them using simply home remedies. Hot tea with honey can help to open the sinuses and ease throat irritation. A hot bath or shower, or standing in the bathroom with a hot shower running, can ease congestion and soothe sinus pain. Sucking on hard candy or a non-medicated cough drop can ease cough symptoms and provide relief for mouth and throat itching.
If you have an aging loved one in need of home care contact Sphinx Home Health Care today.