Allergy sufferers: best places/seasons to hike and best practices?
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HK Newman
(hknewman) - MLife

Locale: Western US
Allergy sufferers: best places/seasons to hike and best practices? on 03/28/2011 09:49:54 MDT Print View

Anyone else have the same problem? Seems when the weather is prime for hiking, allergies are in full bloom also.

Used to work with plants as an environmental contractor for the military, so I'm super-sensitive, having to "double-tap" the decongestant and benadryl when pollen counts climb; going north to hike is often the only alternative for me and seems to work. What about your area?

Josh Newkirk
(Newkirk) - MLife

Locale: Australia
allergies on 03/28/2011 11:55:36 MDT Print View

I used to be badly effected by allergies from pollen and dust and stuff in Australia. It was bad enough that I pretty much stopped breathing through my nose. Would have sniffles and stuff like every morning and night. Now living in the PNW and have had almost no allergy problems at all. Kind of weird being able to breathe out of my nose again. Not sure if it is weather change or plant change but it sure is better.

John Nausieda
(Meander) - MLife

Locale: PNW
allergies on 03/28/2011 12:18:29 MDT Print View

Buy a commercial Saline solution for nasal congestion.You want the bottle Fill it with a solution of 1 cup water boiled with a half teaspoon of sea salt and 1/4 teaspoon Xylitol , a sweetener. This will fill two of these bottles . Use it every morning or anytime that you feel your nose shutting down. I also recommend Sinus relief tablets by A.Vogel . Homeopathic. Using these things I no longer use anything else and I used to react to pollen in Oregon like crazy.

Edited by Meander on 03/28/2011 12:25:49 MDT.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Allergy sufferers: best places/seasons to hike and best practices? on 03/28/2011 17:21:38 MDT Print View

" having to "double-tap" the decongestant and benadryl when pollen counts climb; going north to hike is often the only alternative for me and seems to work."

I have allergy problems, cause unknown, in the Sierra. For years I used OTC decongestants(pseudoephedrine)/antihistamines(benadryl) and, while they kept thngs more or less under control, the side effects were unpleasant. For the last couple of years I have been using a prescription antihistamine spray, with excellent results. As a spray, its effect is localized and does not make me drowzy or make it hard to pee like benadryl, and does not irritate my nasal membranes and jack up my heart rate like pseudoephedrine. The name of the drug is Astelin. It might be worth discussing it with your doc.

Walter Carrington
(Snowleopard) - M

Locale: Mass.
Nasal rinse for allergies. on 03/28/2011 19:40:49 MDT Print View

Two devices for nasal irrigation for allergies and nasal congestion. Use salt and baking soda dissolved in warm water:
http://www.neilmed.com/usa/sinusrinse.php
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neti_pot

Also, a standard prescription med for allergies is a nasal spray with corticosteroids such as flonase.

Edited by Snowleopard on 03/28/2011 19:42:32 MDT.

HK Newman
(hknewman) - MLife

Locale: Western US
Allergy meds - consumable on 03/28/2011 20:12:02 MDT Print View

Have most of those medications, which I will add to my "consumables". Some of them must have come out when I was out of country however.

Also heard of the neti pot but that will likely be at home.

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Re: Allergy sufferers: best places/seasons to hike and best practices? on 03/28/2011 20:31:38 MDT Print View

Well, if you don't mind the heat, a desert hike after spring flowering season might just be up your alley.

Craig Burton
(MissingUtah)

Locale: Smoky Mountains
Ramen! on 03/31/2011 20:26:26 MDT Print View

Over the past few years, allergies, unfortunately, have become a part of my everyday life.

I'm sure everyone's remedy is a little different; but I've found the best decongestant solution for me is a hot shower. Why? The steam works wonders in breaking down the congestion.

While hot showers are not always readily available when backpacking, I've taken this remedy into the backcountry by utilizing Ramen soup as an alternative. Boil it up, breathe in the steam, and have some hot, sodium-rich liquid for dessert. I suppose other food items and OTC solutions can work as well, but I've found soups, in general, to be the best solution.

During activity, allergies aren't as much of a concern for me (it's mostly around camp), so I can't provide much insight on that.

HK Newman
(hknewman) - MLife

Locale: Western US
Peppers and ramen on 03/31/2011 20:52:55 MDT Print View

In town I add some grilled, chopped jalapeno peppers to eggs and sandwiches to unblock everything in addition to my meds. Maybe adding some jalapenos to ramen or other soup would do the trick in camp, though green chile would work better I suppose.

Edited by hknewman on 03/31/2011 20:55:06 MDT.