Allergies are a peculiar form of autoimmune disorder that affect men and women of all ages, including children.
They are inflammatory reactions that occur in your body when you come in contact with a foreign object like pet dander, pollutants, pollen etc.
As these reactions continue to occur for a substantial time, your soft tissues may swell up.
All the physiological effects of allergies like chest congestion, digestive issues and puffy eyes are caused by this internal inflammation.
Though they cannot be cured permanently, you may find a variety of remedies to keep off allergies from attacking you again and again.
Ayurveda is one such alternative that is gaining popularity amongst patients, thanks to its harmless and holistic approach towards allergy treatment.
How it All Begins: Symptoms of Allergies
There are about 5 identified types of allergies, each of which produces different symptoms depending upon the affected body part.
Common to all these types, anaphylaxis is the most severe of all signs of allergies, as it can prove fatal for patients.
The other mild to moderate symptoms of allergic attacks are as follows:
Respiratory Difficulties: Air passages become narrow as an allergic attack is triggered. In turn, you may experience cough, sore throat, runny nose, wheezing and breathlessness. As your heart takes a hit, you may feel a persistent heaviness in your chest.
Facial Swelling: Typical to food allergies. Lips, tongue, cheeks and eyes turn light red and inflame to double proportions. It may affect your ability to speak.
Skin Redness and Itch: In the initial stages, the skin turns excessively dry and develops edema. Hives, flakiness and itching surface in the later days.
Abnormal Body Vitals: Secondary side effects of allergies. A sudden drop in blood pressure, heart rate and mental functions is seen in serious cases.
Locating the Reasons: Causes of Allergies
One may point many fingers, but the reasons for allergies don't quite lie outside of yourself.
Surprisingly, they’re caused by abnormal functioning of the human immune system.
When your immunity encounters one of the triggering substances in the body, it starts producing a high number of antibodies.
In turn, these antibodies release an inflammatory hormone called histamines.
Histamine molecules reach different parts of the body through the bloodstream and irritate their soft tissues, causing a full-fledged allergy.
Different people can have different allergic triggers, like dust, gluten, peanuts, antibiotics, certain cosmetics etc.
Your chances of developing allergies also increase if one or both of your parents have a medical history in this condition.
Subduing the Problem: Treatment for Allergies
Preventing an Encounter: If you have identified your allergen, it is best to take necessary precautions to keep away from it as much as possible. For instance, if dust and pollen are your enemies, you can wear a face mask during the summer months.
Antihistamines: Highly effective allergy medication. They eliminate the inflammatory enzymes from the bloodstream, to reduce the intensity of allergic attack. Taking them regularly can control your symptoms within 7-10 days.
Immunotherapy: A sophisticated treatment where chemicals are injected in the body to normalize immune function, especially allergens are encountered. They have a high success rate, but the medical expense can be equally testing too.
Emergency Measures: One may need to carry epinephrine shots every day if s/he is susceptible to intense allergic reactions. They are usually used to prevent anaphylaxis.
Ayurvedic Treatment for Allergies: A multi-dimensional medical practice that uses soothing herbs to curb allergic attacks. It calms the inflamed soft tissues to unclog the respiratory and digestive systems.
Following the complete Ayurvedic treatment along with Yoga is also known to reduce instances of allergic attacks.
Nipping in the Bud: Tips to Prevent Allergies
Maintain Good Hygiene: Turning your house into a protective fort is perhaps the best of all ways to treat allergies. Wash your bed linen, pillow cover and sheets on a regular basis. Use a high grade air purifier and vacuum to catch the hidden dust and pet dander around you.
Bath it Away: Make it a habit to take a shower after your workouts, job hours and playground visits with the pet. This helps to prevent entry of allergens through clothes, shoes and even your own skin. Don’t forget to use a mild moisturizer after your showers, so that your skin doesn’t have to bear the brunt of repeated washing.
Get Anti-inflammatory Foods: Fresh vegetables, fruits and nuts are known to promote overall well-being. Additionally, they also stabilize the immune system activities, thereby preventing and controlling allergies. As a plus point - You can cook them in a variety of recipes to suit your kids!
Keep a Watch: Don’t think twice before delaying your morning walks or appointments if it's the spring or summer season. Close the windows before you sleep and brush your pet regularly to stop wayward hair shedding. Being sensitive towards one’s surroundings can save many instances of allergies!
Avoid Smoke and Alcohol: The foremost principle of Ayurvedic treatment for allergies is - big NO to stimulants. Besides their toxins, cigarettes and alcohol contain inflammatory chemicals that may make your allergies worse, if not induce them altogether.
Getting Better Inside: Home Remedies for Allergies
Bromelain Backup: Papaya, kiwifruit and pineapple contain high levels of Bromelain, a nutrient that prevents inflammatory reactions. It also strengthens the heart muscles, for better blood circulation and breathing ability.
Steam Therapy: It's possible that you may not have heard of the others, but this is the most recommended of all home remedies to treat allergies. Hot steam can effectively break down mucus depositions in the nasal passages. It also dilates the respiratory tract to ease breathing. But make sure to not exceed the 15 minutes limit!
Vitamin C for Change: Research has proven that consuming 1000 mg Vitamin C on a daily basis can slow down the progress of allergic reactions. This may give your body enough time to recuperate.
Herbal Tea Hush: Boil up a cup of green tea with some Ginger. Strain and add a teaspoon of honey to it for enhancing its decongestant effect. This simple preparation can fulfill your fluid requirements, while giving a touch of relaxation to the constricted chest.
Spice Special: Anti-inflammatory spices like Turmeric, Cinnamon, Black Pepper, Garlic etc. highly beneficial to keep the gut system in order. Use them to make a slurpy chili pepper or horseradish recipe during your recovery days. These foodilicious getaways can be the tastiest natural ways to treat allergies!
Taking Nature’s Help: Ayurvedic Herbs for Allergies
Holy Basil: Being both an antioxidant and immunomodulatory herb, Tulsi is best recommended for all kinds of allergies. You can take it on a day to day basis for warding off the risks of allergy attacks. Besides treating them, Holy Basil can significantly reduce the rate of tissue inflammation.
Dashamoola: It is impossible to miss this herbal mixture where respiratory or digestive disorders are concerned. Dashamoola has the essences of 10 anti-inflammatory herbs. It can rid you of the itchy throat, runny nose and puffy eyes.
Guduchi: Also known as Giloy, this is a humble herb that works for all respiratory ailments. From unclogging chest passages to clearing the blood toxins - this herb can do it all! Additionally, it can treat the fever spikes caused by allergic reactions.
Trikatu: Made from the extracts of three antioxidant herbs, Trikatu is a powerful herbal formulation with immunity-boosting capabilities. It gives steady relief in throat and chest issues caused by rhinitis. You may drink up it's tea every day to fuel the metabolic system!
Manjistha: This is one of the most effective herbs for allergies of skin, the other being its close friend in action i.e. Neem. Manjistha gently rehydrates and soothes the irritated skin tissues to clear away rashes, ulcers and itching. You can use it both as a pill and paste for double relief!
Yoga for Allergies
Vrikshasana (Tree Pose): Owing to its therapeutic effect on the torso organs including chest and heart, this is the best treatment for allergies that you can find on the Yoga mat. It also facilitates the respiratory process and straightens up the spine.
Salamba Sarvangasana (Shoulder-Stand Pose): This Asana generates a calming feeling in the body, which in turn eases your breathing cycle. Also, it stimulates the immune system.
Virabhadrasana (Warrior pose): Especially recommended for its ability to open up clogged vessels, this asana is a great relaxant for the mind, stomach and body muscles.
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