Allergens 101

Shhhh. Listen. Do you hear that? That’s right. It’s silence. That’s because your kids are spending their days in school! Some parents covet the school year as it allows adults to get things done without constant distractions, while others prefer to have the babes at home. No matter your parenting preference, all moms and dads deal with a barrage of other stressors as the school year progresses.

Although summertime is filled with outdoor activities, most of us know where our children are running around and what they’re getting into. School is a safe place, but we’re not there to make sure our children are making smart decisions when it comes to dealing with their allergies. Not to worry! Even though you cannot monitor your child’s activities 24/7, there are a few precautions you can take to help alleviate allergic reactions.

Change Clothes Immediately After School – You don’t know what your child has rolled around in or run through. Encourage “comfy” or “play-clothes-time” as soon as they walk through the door. Allergens hang on to our clothing, so the sooner you get them into the washing machine, the better.

Take Showers/Baths at Night – Pollen also settles on our hair and skin. Although nighttime bathing can become a struggle, if you have a child who is susceptible to outdoor allergens, it’s worth it. Remind them that they don’t want to take these things to bed with them.

Wash Pillowcases Often – Washing bedding frequently is a good idea for many reasons, but pay close attention to pillowcases. It’s where we lay our heads; therefore, pillows can be a breeding ground for allergies. They’re easier to refresh than complete bedding, too!

Keep Your Home Clean – It’s OK if your filing system is on the dining room table, but to cut down on allergens, you should have a checklist of to-dos for the household. Keep your windows closed during the day, check air filters, wash your curtains from time-to-time, and vacuum regularly. Just pretend you’re a tiny allergen yourself. Where would you settle? As soon as you’ve figured that out, clean the space.

Track Allergies – Encourage your kids to recognize when their allergies hit: after P.E., during sports, in the science lab? If you can take note of allergy triggers, you can combat them head-on. 

Set your mind at ease while your kids are being educated. Allergies can throw a wrench in anyone’s day, but with a few precautions and a little detective work, you and your little scholar can make school and home life as sneeze-free as possible. 

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