Controlling seasonal allergies in the spring

Spring is here which means both warmer temperatures and the return of seasonal allergies.  Many over-the-counter allergy treatments now exist, including the latest, nasal steroids, which require no prescription.

What do you use to control your seasonal allergies?

Allergies are caused from a variety of indoor and outdoor allergens, mainly tree pollen in the spring.  And although there is no cure for allergies, many prescription allergy medicines have now been approved to become over-the-counter.   


Comments 11

  • K8sMom2002

    DD uses Zyrtec, and has for years. It's one of the few antihistamines that don't contain a corn ingredient (at least her generic), unlike some of the others on the market, so we have to stick with that. 

    DD also uses saline sprays and saline nasal gel. 

    Lots of our other members have used nasal rinses … there's a whole conversation going on about whether , and the general consensus seems to be, yeah, it works! Now if I could only get past my gag reflex and fear of feeling like I'm drowning …

  • Serene

    The American Academy of Allergy Asthma & Immunology has recently updated their drug guide:

    Included is a link for a non profit which assist patients to explore programs for which they can receive free or reduced cost medications.


  • Jen

    Thanks for sharing that Serene. . 

    AAFA also has a blog post about what to do if you can't afford your asthma medication - 

  • Jen

    Forgot to mention, my crew deals with seasonal allergies. Dh and dd1 use Zyrtec. I use Zyrtec and singulair. Dd's 2 and 3 use Zyrtec or Claritin as needed. We all have sinus rinses and nasacort when needed as well. Ds seems ok without meds for now. He has more issues with eczema than seasonal allergies. 

  • Jen

    And…I have allergic conjunctivitis, so I use patanol year round. 

  • Serene

    XYZAL is now off-patent. It is cetirizine, (Zyrtec)  and was formerly prescription only. 

  • Kathy P

    Xyzal and Zyrtec are slightly different meds. Xyzal is Levocetirizine.  I've been taking Xyzal for years. My insurance is still covering the generic as an Rx which still comes out less expensive for me.

    I need to pick up so eye drops cuz my eyes are really itchy and sticky. 

  • K8sMom2002

    Jen and Kathy, hugs on the itchy eyes. That's a problem DD has as well. DD uses an OTC 12 hour eye drop. Her primary care physician wanted her to try cromolyn drops, but it interfered in her ability to wear contacts, so we went back to the OTC drops. 

    I've noticed that Xyzal is now available OTC, so I hope you'll be able to continue getting it as a generic more cheaply.

  • AS

    Zyrtec (generic), eye drops (generic Opcon-A), saline spray – all help. I have started Flonase this year and it also seems to help with congestion/PND. I also try to wash my hands and face whenever I come in from outside to hopefully eliminate at least some the pollen. Saturday was very windy with high pollen (and of course I was outside most of the day) so Sunday and this morning I was feeling it. I don't know if this makes a difference but I try to take the Zyrtec at night hoping that congestion will be less over night into the morning but I take the Flonase in the morning – it seemed to keep me up one night when I took it too late before bed. 

  • K8sMom2002

    AS, that's a great tip on washing your hands and face! I'm one to wash my hands fairly often, but I haven't thought about that. I would guess that maybe another good suggestion is to change clothes after being outside on a windy, high pollen day?

  • K8sMom2002

    @Serene, does Xyzal help you more than, say, Zyrtec? My DD has been on Zyrtec for ages, but it may be worth it to try Xyzal if I can find it in a corn-free formula.