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Who doesn’t love the smell of spring after a long winter? Your kid with seasonal allergies, for one.

Hay fever, or seasonal allergies, is very common — and can be really uncomfortable. While it’s not always easy to tell a cold from allergies, it’s more likely to be allergies if there’s no fever, if eyes are itchy, if there’s lots of sneezing…and if it lasts longer than a few days.

Kids, and anyone for that matter, can be allergic to one or more types of pollen or mold. The type someone is allergic to determines when symptoms happen. For example, in the mid-Atlantic states, tree pollination is February through May, grass pollen runs from May through June, and weed pollen is from August through October — so kids with these allergies are likely to have increased symptoms at those times. Mold spores tend to peak midsummer through the fall, depending on location.

The good news is that there are some simple things that you can do to make your child — and anyone else in the house that has hay fever — feel better.

Close the windows

After a long and stuffy winter, it’s tempting to open them, but don’t — because that lovely fresh air brings pollen in with it. If you have an air conditioner, run it. If not, make sure to thoroughly clean the windows before letting that fresh air into the house.

Wash up and change when you get home

Speaking of bringing pollen in, you also do a good job of that when you come inside. The allergy sufferer should definitely change clothes and wash his hands and face when he comes in, but it’s not a bad idea for everyone to do the same, as you all could be pollen-carriers. Try to keep your house as pollen-free as possible. The room where this is particularly important is the bedroom, as that’s where your child spends the most time. If possible, try to keep your child out of his bedroom during the day (move the fun toys somewhere else) and have him bathe before bed.

Be thoughtful about outside time

Speaking of bringing pollen in, you also do a good job of that when you come inside. The allergy sufferer should definitely change clothes and wash his hands and face when he comes in, but it’s not a bad idea for everyone to do the same, as you all could be pollen-carriers. Try to keep your house as pollen-free as possible. The room where this is particularly important is the bedroom, as that’s where your child spends the most time. If possible, try to keep your child out of his bedroom during the day (move the fun toys somewhere else) and have him bathe before bed.

Use allergy medication the right way — and talk to your doctor if it’s not working

When it comes to taking a medication to relieve symptoms, like the itchy eyes or sneezing of allergies, we tend to think that we should take it when we have the symptoms, and not take it when we don’t. But it turns out that allergy medications work best when you take them consistently — and can take a while to kick in. So while it’s understandable that you would want to hold off on medications until things get bad, and skip them on good days, your child will actually do better if you get them started at the first sniffle — and continue until allergy season is over (check with your doctor as to when you should stop).

Come to our Parent Workshop

Join us where we will share the latest research in childhood development, and an underlying reason that is causing your child’s symptoms. You already know it is affecting their growth, development, social life, education, and overall happiness and you may have felt alone. We look forward to shedding some light and welcoming you into our community.