For some it’s dander. For others, it’s trees, flowers, and even grass. Then there are those that it’s dust mites. Allergies. Many people have them. But how do allergies affect our sleep?
Allergies can cause such symptoms as runny noses, sneezing, eyes that water, and that horrible congestion where you just can’t breathe. According to Merriam-Webster, rhinitis is “inflammation of the mucus membrane of the nose”. All of this can happen just because of allergies. When it does happen, we don’t sleep well. Sometimes we are so congested, we just feel like we aren’t getting sleep. What can we do to prevent or cope with these allergies and get better rest?
- Decongestants and antihistamines - There are a slew of over-the-counter medicines available today that can help keep allergies in check. Some of the side effects of these medicines include drowsiness, which means in addition to helping relieve the symptoms they may also assist in helping us sleep. As with any medicine, always check with your doctor before adding any medicine to your routine to help ensure you won’t have any adverse effects, possible interactions with other medications, and similar concerns related to your health.
- Keep it clean - Whether it’s pet dander or dust mites that affect you, keeping your house (and especially your bedroom) clear of these allergens can help you sleep better at night. Though our furry friends are an important part of the family, to limit your dander exposure it might be best if you don’t let them sleep in the bed with you at night.
- Probe your pad - Look at your bed and your bedroom. The products you sleep on should be certified that they aren’t made with harmful chemicals. You breathe in the contents of your pillow every night, so you want to make sure that what you are breathing in isn’t bad for you. Microfiber is great at repelling allergens, meaning sheets made of microfiber are a great choice for your bed.
- Keep it up - Keeping your head at a higher elevation could help create a better breathing passage for you. Adjustable pillows are a great option to make sure you have the height you need and your head is up higher, helping you breathe better.
Of course, if you suffer from allergies, you should talk with your doctor and possibly see a specialist to see what course of action is best for you.