« Healthcare Highlights Help for Allergies Help for Allergies Breathe easier Spring! This most welcome season brings increased daylight, warm weather, and new growth. After a long West Virginia winter, spring can be a time of joy—or it can be the start of absolute misery for allergy sufferers. These warm, sunny days encourage the release of pollen from trees and grasses. For some people, exposure to pollen triggers allergic symptoms: a runny nose, sneezing, itchy eyes, and coughing. Rather than enjoying the fresh air and sunshine, work and play outside can be agony for those with seasonal allergies. Allergy symptoms are caused by the body’s immune system response to otherwise non-harmful substances that are breathed in or get in the eyes. Histamine, one of the chemicals your body releases into the blood during an allergic reaction, may cause inflammation, nasal congestion, a runny nose, sneezing, and itching. Antihistamines, found in many of the over-the-counter allergy medicines you see advertised on television, may work well for treating airborne allergies. However, antihistamines may not be enough to bring relief. Using skin or blood tests, our doctors determine what is causing the allergy. Medications, both over-the-counter and prescription, or allergy injection therapy can be used to decrease or eliminate the symptoms. Whether your allergy is caused by pollen, molds, or a combination of springtime triggers, we can help children and adults breathe easier. Breathing easier makes life, in any season, much more enjoyable. WVU Healthcare’s allergy specialists are experts in treating all kinds of allergies in both children and adults, including those caused by animal dander, dust mites, food, and insect stings. If symptoms are persistent and are affecting your quality of life, call 304-598-4800 for an appointment.