Being a parent comes with countless responsibilities. Juggling everything from work to relationships while focusing on your family’s needs takes a lot of energy, and it can leave you feeling drained at the end of the day. If you suffer from allergies, your symptoms might make finding the energy to complete everyday tasks even more challenging. It’s called allergy fatigue, and you’re not alone. A lot of allergy sufferers experience low energy levels and “brain fog” when regularly exposed to allergens.
Allergy fatigue is a very real problem. Other allergy symptoms like itchiness, congestion and breathing problems can make it impossible to get a good night’s rest, and the histamine your body produces when exposed to allergens can make you even more tired.
If you’re sick of allergies making you tired, keep reading to learn how you can prevent allergy fatigue.
How to Manage Allergy Fatigue
Find the Source of Your Symptoms
The first step to preventing allergy fatigue is finding the source of your symptoms. That can be pretty hard when you have a million things making you tired every day, so it can help to pay close attention to your other allergy symptoms and what triggers them. To do this, try starting an allergy log. Simply jot down your symptoms and the things you are exposed to throughout the day, and look for links between the two.
If you’re having trouble finding the source of your symptoms on your own, you can take an at-home allergy test to help you get to the bottom of it. Visiting an allergist who specializes in diagnosing and treating allergies is also a good option, especially if your allergies are severe. You might discover that you’re allergic to something you never even thought of.
Limit Exposure to Allergens
Once you find out which allergens are causing your fatigue, the next step is to find ways to limit exposure. For outdoor allergens, like pollen and mold, you can track daily allergen levels and see when they’re at their highest. You can find this information online or on most weather apps. Try to limit your time outdoors as much as possible on high exposure days, and move family activities indoors whenever you can during allergy season.
Limiting your exposure to indoor allergens can be a little trickier, but it is possible to allergy-proof your home. For allergens like pet dander and dust mites, dusting furniture, vacuuming carpets and washing bedding regularly can all help keep allergen levels to a minimum.
Consider Allergy Medication
Allergy medication can help relieve symptoms for both indoor and outdoor allergens, and there are plenty of affordable, over-the-counter options. However, you’ll want to make sure to choose one that doesn’t make you drowsy. Grab one that says non-drowsy on the label, or ask your doctor to help you find a medication that works best for you.
How to Improve Your Sleep
Trying to sleep with allergies can be a nightmare. Sneezing, coughing, itchiness and the general discomfort caused by allergies can prevent you from getting the quality sleep you need to feel energized during the day. Luckily, there are plenty of simple steps you can take to stop your symptoms from keeping you up at night.
Elevate Your Head
Propping your head up with an extra pillow or two can help relieve congestion and prevent mucus from building up in your sinuses while you sleep. This is also a good tip to pass on to your family during cold and flu season.
Shower Before Bed
Hopping in the shower before bed can prevent allergens from hitching a ride in your hair or on your skin. Taking a shower or bath can also help you fall asleep and stay asleep by lowering your body temperature, and it’s a great way to unwind.
Use an Air Purifier
Air purifiers improve air quality by filtering out airborne allergens. Adding one to your bedroom can be a great way to improve your sleep and keep you from coughing and sneezing throughout the night.
Tips For Staying Alert
As a busy parent, allergy fatigue probably isn’t the only thing making you feel drained. Plenty of other things can make you tired throughout the day, and it’s important to address them whenever you can. These quick tips can help to feel more energized as you tackle your day.
Dehydration can make you feel tired and sluggish. To prevent this, try to drink at least 6-8 glasses of water throughout the day. Keeping a water bottle with you can help you remember. If water isn’t really your thing, try infusing it with herbs or fruit to add some natural sweetness. Staying hydrated will help you to feel energized, and it could even boost your mood!
Get Some Exercise
Whether you are stuck at a desk all day or spend the day bustling around the house, squeezing in a few minutes of exercise can help to boost your energy levels. It doesn’t have to be a lot. Going for a quick walk around the block or doing some stretches at your desk can release endorphins that boost your energy levels.
Take Short Breaks
Taking breaks throughout the day can increase focus and reduce fatigue. If you find yourself wearing down while grinding away at a task, take a few minutes to make yourself a cup of tea or listen to a relaxing podcast. A break also provides a good opportunity to check in with your body. If you’re feeling drained, try eating a healthy snack or taking a quick nap. Focusing on your family’s needs is important, but don’t forget that yours are important too!
Michaela Wong is a content creator and graduate of San Diego State University. She writes in a variety of industries ranging from health and wellness to interior design.