My seasonal allergies have been killing me! As I told my friends, I’ve blown my nose so often this past month that I feel like I’m going to blow out my brains! It’s horticultural homicide! My younger son has them as well, just far milder symptoms.
At this point, I am willing to try just about anything, and I really would prefer some herbal hay fever remedies. There are more possibilities out there, but these are the ones I have tried.
Raw, local honey
In past years, I have eaten crackers with brie and raw, local honey to help with seasonal allergies. The general idea is that the pollen enters your system through the honey and your body is better able to deal with it. that means that if the pollens you are allergic to are ones bees don’t visit much, honey won’t help much.
It also means that non-local honey won’t help because the pollens will be different. The general guidelines I’ve heard is that the honey needs to be from within 50 miles of where you live, but closer is definitely better. Treated honey has lost many of its healing properties, so stick with raw honey.
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This definitely seems to help me, but I know other people who see no improvement with it. This is one remedy that needs taken in advance to head off a problem. Once the pollen is out, it’s seems like it too late because the honey takes time to work.
In the interest of full disclosure, at least one study shows that local honey does not help allergies. Since studies can be wrong, and at least one unpublished study shows benefits, I will continue to use it.
Friends and family have recommended neti pots, but I never tried them before this year. Basically, you pour water in one nostril and it flows through your sinuses and out the other side, cleaning them out in the process. Undeniably weird, this traditional technique has helped me.
Not sharing neti pots is recommended. Sharing them also just seems gross, especially since they really aren’t expensive or hard to find. They range from very light-weight plastic models to sturdier ceramic versions. I think the plastic ones are easier for little ones to use because they are so light.
More importantly, be sure to use water that has been boiled if it isn’t already bottled or distilled. There are things that stomach acids can kill off with ease that will grow and multiply happily in your sinus cavities.
When I start coughing, it gets extremely bad, extremely quickly due to past problems. I keep prescription cough syrup on hand at all times to head this off, but that doesn’t mean I like taking it.
In researching herbal remedies, I read about licorice for coughing. When the post-nasal drip gave me a wicked cough, I decided to give it a try. Licorice tea is smooth and mild, but if you hate black licorice, this might take some getting used to.
I steep a tea ball with anywhere from a teaspoon to a tablespoon of licorice root in eight ounces of water for five minutes. The tea ball can be used for two cups of tea, in my experience. With a “snap” tea ball similar to the one in the link, I simply fill it with licorice root without measuring at all.
Aromatherapy for congestion
I have been using the “Breathe” blend from Eden’s Garden, but most essential oil companies should have their own similar blend.
My son and I put it behind our ears and at the base of our neck. Some people put it in a diffuser and prefer that method.
Aromatherapy for hay fever
In my search, I found this article. It recommends Roman chamomile with lemon, eucalyptus, or lavender. I left my son choose, and he went with eucalyptus. Last night, I used put this all around and on his nose and cheeks. This morning, for the first time in weeks, he woke up and did not have a streaming nose and accompanying cough!! When I asked if he preferred essential oils or OTC medicine this morning, he chose the EOs. Yeah!
The article above has a lot more specific information, including a longer list of oils to blend, but I simply blended five drops of each of the two oils I chose into a 30 ml fragrance free hotel moisturizer. It was fast, easy, and seems to have helped.
Importance of several hay fever remedies
After my efforts and talking to my doctor, who is very supportive of alternative medicine, it seems that multiple methods of attack are needed for hay fever. Personally, I’m using several OTC medicines combined with several herbal remedies.
Next year, I’m eating my brie with honey and feeding my youngest toast with honey and cinnamon for breakfast during the winter months in an attempt to blunt the severity of hay fever. I don’t want to go through this again!
If you have any other home remedies, please add them in the comments!!
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