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A NOTE FROM OUR NURSE ~ March 2018

 
 

It’s Time to Start Seasonal Allergy Prevention!

On the unusual warm days in February, I started to see students reporting seasonal allergy
symptoms which include sneezing; stuffy or runny nose; cough and scratchy throat due to postnasal
drip; puffy, watery, itchy eyes and itchy mouth or skin. Allergy symptoms are uncomfortable and can
affect a student’s ability to learn.
Seasonal allergic rhinitis usually develops after a few years of exposure to an outdoor allergen which
is why students who have never had an issue may start to exhibit symptoms. In early spring, allergies
are caused by the pollen of certain trees and shrubs. A warmer winter can cause plants to pollinate
early, meaning sufferers' symptoms start up sooner than usual. A rainy spring can also promote rapid
plant growth and lead to an increase in mold which can lead to symptoms.

If your child has seasonal allergies, they should ideally start allergy medicines at least two to three
weeks before the beginning of the season and continue them through the end. Most allergy
medicines are far more effective at preventing symptoms than they are at treating them once they
start. That's because the runny nose, stuffiness, itching, sneezing, and watery eyes result from a
whole cascade of events in the immune system, and once it gets going it's hard to stop.
Please consult your child’s doctor about the best way to manage their symptoms. If oral medications
(Claritin, Allegra, Zyrtec, Xyzal) and/or nasal sprays (Nasacort/Flonase) and/or eye drops are
recommended, these are best used at home daily during allergy season even when symptoms
appear to be under control.

 

Hoping for an early and sunny spring with minimal allergy symptoms!

Susan Quigley, RN, NCSN

March 2018 Tiger Times