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Seasonal allergies affect millions of Americans each year. Symptoms of this condition include sneezing, itchy or watery eyes, sore throat and difficulty breathing. These symptoms most commonly occur in the fall or spring due to the release of ragweed and pollen particles in the air.

Even though the weather is starting to improve, it’s got many of us feeling downright miserable! If you’re one of the many seasonal allergy sufferers, you’ve probably tried a few different allergy pills or nasal sprays in search of relief from your symptoms. Often times, this might not be enough. Here are a few more ways that can help you keep your allergies in check this spring.

Take off your shoes! Our shoes are magnets for dust mites, bacteria and in the spring, pollen. As soon as you step foot in your home, take your shoes off and leave them by the door to prevent spreading pollen and other allergens.

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Close your windows. On days where your allergies are particularly acting up, it’s a good idea to shut the doors and windows in your home and turn on the air conditioner (or furnace if it’s cooler out). The fresh air feels great, but it also brings along airborne allergens inside.

Wash hair before bed. Throughout the day, our hair collects pollen and allergens which rubs off onto our pillow and irritates us while we try to sleep. Prevent this by washing your hair – or taking a complete shower – before bed.

Replace your HVAC filters. When’s the last time you’ve changed your furnace or A/C filter? If you can’t remember, you could probably benefit from a new one. Old filters collect allergens and pass them through our homes, contributing to seasonal allergy symptoms.

Try a nasal rinse. Using a nasal rinse can clear mucus from your nose and help you breathe easier. Regular rinsing will also lubricate your nasal passages and get rid of bacteria that can worsen allergy symptoms.

Drink more water. Make sure you’re drinking at least 64 ounces of water every day! Staying hydrated helps thin the mucus in our nasal passages and allows us to breathe easier. Hot beverages such as tea, coffee and broth have also shown to pack a punch in the fight against allergies.

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