Does the winter weather have you running for a tissue? Is a scratchy throat a common occurrence around your home this time of year? Do your ears feel as though they are full of pressure? The cold weather can wreak havoc on your sinuses, but could your problem be more than just a common cold?
Here are some ways to tell if your symptoms are allergy related, rather than a passing bug:
You get them every year
If your symptoms reoccur around the same time every year, you may be dealing with allergies. Because winter is a time when fewer plants are blooming, many people don't automatically associate these symptoms with allergies. However, if bringing a live Christmas tree into your home each year causes your eyes to water and your nose to run, this might be a sign that your winter cold is stemming from allergies.
The problem seems to be climate related
Different climate zones are capable of growing different types of plants and mold spores. If your trip south for the winter always seems to leave you feeling a bit under the weather but returning to a drier climate brings immediate relief, it may be that you are allergic to certain types of mold and plants that grow better in more humid climates.
Self-medicating with cold remedies doesn't seem to help
Decongestants and expectorants may be great if you have a sinus infection, but for seasonal allergies, these types of cold medicines don't really help. An antihistamine that is taken daily can be more beneficial for alleviating these types of symptoms.
It always turns into something worse
Many people who end up with yearly sinus infections and ear infections have nagging allergy symptoms for several weeks before they develop into these more severe problems. Because self-medicating with the wrong types of medicine won't be very effective for allergy symptoms, failure to get relief can ultimately lead to secondary infections.
If you feel that allergies may be the root of your sinus problems, it may be time to see an ear, nose, and throat specialist or an allergist. These doctors can help you to determine if your symptoms truly are related to seasonal allergies, or if there is something else that needs to be addressed.
Don't sit around and suffer until your symptoms get unbearable. Seeing a doctor about your allergy symptoms can help you to find relief before a problem starts. For more help, contact a company like Oak Brook Allergists to ask questions and find more information.