Integrated Family Community Services 3370 South Irving Street, Englewood, CO 80110-1816 Ph: 303-789-0501

How to Help Your Child Deal with Their Allergies & Get Back to Playing

As an adult, allergy symptoms can be frustrating, annoying and uncomfortable. For children, they can be even worse as it can keep them from playing, enjoying the outdoors and having fun with their friends. There are ways that you can help manage your child’s allergies and help them get back to having fun.

Plan Inside Events When Pollen is High

Although your child may love to play outside, if pollen counts are high, it may be best to find things for them to do inside to avoid allergy symptoms. Invite some of their friends inside for a day of board games or let them curl up on the sofa with popcorn to watch movies. If you can’t keep your child inside all day, have them outside in the early morning or late afternoon and avoid the middle of the day as that is when pollen counts are at their highest.

Saline Sprays and Neti Pots

If allergies lead to stuffy noses or scratchy throats, saline sprays, neti pots and salt-water gargle may be your best option for alleviating the symptoms. Saline sprays are available over-the-counter and contain no medications. They are made up of salt water that can open nasal passages. A neti pot filled with salt water can do the same. Gargling with salt water can lessen the pain of a scratchy or sore throat as well.

Run the Shower

Another way to reduce coughing and congestion is by running a hot shower and letting the child sit in the steaming bathroom for a few minutes. Steam can reduce congestion naturally so your child can start breathing easier. You can also let the child play in the bathtub filled with hot water to get the steam effect. If you have a spa or outdoor hot tub, kids may enjoy siting in the bubbles to play, not realizing you are letting the steam from the water help them feel better.

Humidity and Air Conditioning

If your child suffers from allergies, it may be best to keep the windows closed, even on this nice spring days. Run your air conditioner on a high temperature to keep it from cooling the house too much or starting often in order to keep your energy bills down. Consider adding a humidifier if the air in your home is dry. Keep humidity under 40 percent to avoid mold growth or dust mites that can aggravate allergies.

Cold and Warm Compresses

Cold compresses are an excellent way to relieve itchy, water eyes. Wet a washrag or small towel with cool water and place it on the child’s eyes for relief. Try to keep your child from rubbing their eyes as this could make the itchiness worse. Buy tissues with lotion or aloe as well to keep them from causing irritation to your child’s nose and eyes. If your child’s nose is raw from blowing it, rub some petroleum jelly on it to reduce the pain. If your child is suffering from sinus pain and pressure, use a warm compress instead of cold.

Turn to the Kitchen

If your child likes spicy foods, create a meal that includes cayenne pepper, hot ginger, fenugreek, onions or garlic. These foods can naturally thin mucus and clear nasal passages. Fluids can help dry throats, so encourage your child to drink more water or juices. Weak warm tea with honey and lemon can help soothe throats and the steam from the tea can relieve sinus congestion. If your child is allergic to ragweed, they may be sensitive to certain foods like bananas, melons, chamomile tea, sunflower seeds and cucumbers. During allergy season, keep those foods to a minimum.

Allergy symptoms can be uncomfortable and irritating. It is important to not ignore allergies as they can lead to other complications. If home remedies do not seem to help, talk to your child’s doctor about ways you can reduce their symptoms and get them back playing again.

Tim Esterdahl

Tim Esterdahl is the editor of IFCS blog. He is a married father of three and enjoys golf in his spare time.
Tim Esterdahl

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