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Health and wellness

Spring allergies: Nip them in the bud

Spring allergies: Nip them in the bud

Spring brings warm weather, colorful flower buds, and more outdoor activities. But for some of us, it also brings sneezing, a runny nose, and watery eyes. You can take certain steps to reduce the misery spring allergies may bring and enjoy all that the beautiful season has to offer.


Spring allergies typically begin in March and last until early summer. Dr. Joshua Dunklebarger, of WellSpan ENT and Hearing Services in Chambersburg, says spring allergy season starts as the trees start to release pollen and flowers start to bloom.

In areas with mild weather, some pollens may last longer with a longer grass season. In contrast, places experiencing a late winter will have lower pollen counts. 

Trees, flowers, and mold typically cause itchy and watery eyes, nasal congestion, a runny nose and puffiness in the face.  Other symptoms can include redness around the eyes and nose, as well as an itchy throat and ears, Dr. Dunklebarger says.

Remedies & Tips

Dr. Dunklebarger says the best remedy is avoidance.  If you are unable to do so, then medication like an antihistamine, should be started prior to the spring season.  

Nasal irrigation is also very important to clear the allergens from the nose. In addition, nasal steroid sprays can be used to help prevent nasal congestion. You can also make changes in your home by using high-efficiency particulate absorbing filters, also known as HEPA, and whole-house filtration which can relieve the irritable symptoms.

When home remedies aren't enough

You may make it through the season by using over-the-counter remedies, a warm shower before bedtime, or even by washing your bed linens with hot water frequently. But, if you're tired of that routine and your allergies aren't appropriately relieved by Dr. Dunklebarger's recommendations, make an appointment with a provider. 

To schedule an appointment, click here.