While your pollen allergies may be subsiding as the temperature drops, it means that allergies like pet dander, dust mites, and mold may become more prevalent as you spend more time indoors. Add cold and flu season to that, and you may be wondering if you are suffering from indoor allergies, a cold, or the flu.
Winter allergy symptoms often include congestion, itchy, watery eyes, and a runny nose, making it easy to confuse winter allergies for the cold or the flu. These similarities can make it difficult for you to tell whether you need an appointment with your doctor, your allergist or if you need an over-the-counter cold treatment.
Allergy, Flu, and Cold Symptoms to Look For
When it comes to determining whether you are sick with a cold or the flu or suffering from indoor allergies, you need to take a close look at what other symptoms you may be experiencing.
For example, if you are experiencing a fever and body aches, it is likely you may have the flu. These symptoms can also occur with a cold, but you won’t have these symptoms if you suffer from allergies.
You also want to look at how long you’ve been experiencing symptoms. If you’ve dealt with a runny nose, cough, watery eyes, and congestion for more than three weeks, you are likely suffering from allergies. If you’ve been sneezing in addition to your other symptoms, this is common with allergies. Itchy eyes are another sign that you are suffering from indoor allergies.
What Can I Do If I Have Allergies?
To help minimize your exposure to allergens, there are several steps you can take. You will want to start by getting tested for allergies. If you’re not sure what you are allergic to, make an appointment for allergy testing to determine the exact cause of your symptoms. This will help you know which allergens to clear from your home. You can also:
- Try Nasal Sprays – Just like your skin, your nose can become dry in the winter due to the dry air inside and outside, which can lead to nosebleeds. Use saltwater spray or nasal gels to help prevent irritation and dryness.
- Use an Air Purifier – An air purifier with a HEPA filter works efficiently to remove allergens from the air. We also recommend installing filters in the vents in your home.
- Look for Home Allergens – Home allergens, such as pet dander or mold, can cause flair-ups. Cleaning your house regularly will help keep dust to a minimum creating less irritation.
- Allergy Medications or Shots – When your allergies are more than regular cleaning can handle, it’s time to talk with your allergist about your options for medications or allergy shots. They can help you find the best option for your lifestyle so you can live allergy-free.
Think you May have Allergies? Schedule Your Allergy Testing Today!
Contact Allergy & Clinical today to schedule your allergy testing or to learn more about indoor allergies!