The cold winter weather tends to keep us all huddled together in our homes. But for allergy sufferers, close quarters with pets, dust mites, and other indoor allergens can make winter a tough time for allergies and sinus infections.
Indoor allergies represent some of the most common sensitizations, particularly to dust mite and pet dander. Dust mites are microscopic insects that eat the skin cells that we shed, and so they multiply the most in our bedding, couches, and other places where we spend a lot of time. Reducing dust buildup and keeping humidity low (dust mites get their water from the air) help, but dust mites are nearly impossible to completely avoid.
Dander from furred pets is another very common allergy. Keeping pets out of bedrooms (ideally outside!), bathing/grooming regularly, and cleaning regularly to reduce dander buildup can be helpful.
If you have hard winters, with recurring nasal/sinus symptoms, it may be worth completing allergy testing to see if pets or dust (or other indoor allergens, like mold, cockroach, rodents, and others) are driving your symptoms. Treatment options can include avoidance measures based on your allergy triggers, medications, and in some cases allergy shots to desensitize patients to particular triggers such as their pets.
If you’ve noticed that all the winter togetherness has been bad for your allergies, we can help you feel your best while spending time with all the members of your family, even the furry ones.