We all know the symptoms of spring allergies—runny noses, decongestion, sneezing, itchy eyes or skin—but we can still be caught by surprise when our kids experience them. Whether this is an annual issue or it’s the first time that your kids are experiencing these symptoms, touch base with your pediatrician or family doctor for advice on what you should do next. Your doctor may recommend a COVID-19 test or confirm that these are simply seasonal allergies that commonly flare up at this time of year. Read on for healing remedies that will help your little one feel better.
Runny noses and decongestion
It can sometimes seem like kids have a nose-faucet when allergies hit. But, to quote Shrek, better out than in! Have plenty of Boogie Wipes® saline nose wipes on hand since they contain natural saline to gently remove mucus and dissolve hardened-on snot; they’re also safe for sensitive skin made more tender due to extra wiping. And don’t forget to remind your child to sneeze into their sleeve or a wipe and dispose of used wipes as soon as possible. One thing we learned during the pandemic is how to keep germs to ourselves.
To break up congestion, have your little one take a warm shower or bath. Once they’re done, stay in the bathroom, fill it with steam and sit for 15 to 30 minutes. A humidifier provides the same benefit, adding moisture to the air which breaks up mucus. Essential oils can also provide some sinus relief—try eucalyptus or peppermint oil to open nasal passages. Add a few drops to a diffuser in your child’s room at night.
Itchy eyes or skin
If you’ve ever experienced itchy eyes due to allergies, you know how irritating and uncomfortable it feels. Kids may have a hard time not touching their eyes—which only makes the itchiness worse! Try using a cold compress over closed eyes, which will help soothe the urge to scratch. Over-the-counter saline eye drops may help soothe the itchiness as well.
A cool cloth also helps with itchy skin or hives; place it directly on the affected area and repeat as necessary. For all-over discomfort, try a warm bath with products using colloidal oatmeal. Not your breakfast oats, this oatmeal is ground into a fine powder and helps calm inflamed or irritated skin. A warm bath after a day of playing outside will also offer relief and remove any tree or grass pollen that may be on the skin.
Prevent allergens as much as possible
There are many other things you can do at home to help kids with allergies: change furnace filters regularly to keep dust mites and other aggravators from spreading, purchase a portable air filter, check pollen counts and keep windows closed on days when counts are high. You might be surprised to learn that pollen counts swell at various times throughout the year, depending on where you live. Keeping track will help you—and your kids—be better prepared.