Stop the Sniffles: Spring Allergy Safety Tips for SeniorsBrandermill Woods independent living angle

Stop the Sniffles: Spring Allergy Safety Tips for Seniors

Wednesday, April 12, 2023

More than 100 million Americans have some type of allergy, making allergies one of the most common health problems in the United States. Common symptoms include sneezing, watery eyes, hives, rashes, and nasal congestion. Fortunately, you don't have to stay cooped up in your apartment all spring and summer long. Implementing just a few of these tips into your lifestyle here at Brandermill Woods can help you reduce your exposure to allergens and keep your symptoms to a minimum.

Keep an Eye on the Pollen Count
Although the Richmond metropolitan area has many positive attributes, it consistently ranks as one of the most challenging places to live if you have allergies. Many factors affect pollen production, but record-high temperatures have been spurring plant growth, causing them to make more pollen than usual. Virginia's unique geographic features also cause heavy pollen concentrations in the spring and summer. Before you venture outdoors for spring activities in Richmond, VA, check the pollen count. If it's high, you may want to wait until later in the day to run errands or take a walk around the grounds, as pollen levels peak early in the afternoon.

Enjoy Indoor Activities
One of the many benefits of moving to Brandermill Woods is that we offer dozens of social activities for our residents every month. If the pollen count is high, avoid aggravating your allergy symptoms by staying indoors and spending time with your fellow community members. Book an appointment with a hair stylist, play cards, do a little chair yoga, or show off your trivia skills.

Clean More Often
When you go outside, pollen sticks to your clothes, making it easy to bring it into your apartment with you. Brandermill Woods offers housekeeping services to its independent living residents, but if your allergies are acting up, you can get ahead of your symptoms by wiping down surfaces and sweeping your floors between cleanings. This eliminates much of the pollen, leaving you with clearer eyes and fewer sniffles.

Shower at Night
If you shower in the morning and then spend the day outside, the pollen on your body eventually ends up on your sheets, pillowcases, and blankets. Reduce the amount of pollen in your bedroom by changing your clothes as soon as you get home and taking a shower before you go to bed. This routine won't eliminate 100% of allergens from your home, but it can prevent you from breathing them in while you sleep, improving your allergy symptoms.

Adjust Your Environment
Making a few changes to your environment can limit your exposure to pollen and other allergens. Follow these tips to keep your allergy symptoms at bay:

  • Purchase an air purifier with a high-efficiency particulate air, or HEPA, filter. This type of filter removes more than 99% of airborne particles smaller than 0.3 microns. This includes dust, bacteria, and pollen.
  • Unless your doctor recommends it, don't use a humidifier inside your apartment. Dust mites, one of the most common allergens, thrive in humid environments.
  • Put a floor mat at the entrance to your home. Every time you come inside, wipe your feet to prevent allergens from getting into other areas of your home.

Take Allergy Medication
If changing your habits doesn't eliminate your sneezing, sniffling, and watery eyes, ask your doctor if it's safe to take an over-the-counter allergy medicine. Brandermill Woods offers scheduled transportation to medical appointments, making it easy to seek professional advice. Our independent living community also has a wellness nurse available on weekdays in case you have any questions about taking your medication correctly.

Overcome Allergies Without Slowing Down
Brandermill Woods is conveniently located in the Richmond metro area, making it easy to go to the beach, visit world-class museums in Washington, D.C., or plan a mountain getaway. To schedule a tour, call (804) 744-1173, or contact us online. If you follow these tips, you can maximize your enjoyment of the Greater Richmond region and central VA senior living without aggravating your allergies.