For many seniors, allergy season can be unbearable. Older adults may be susceptible to the standard allergy symptoms or have other conditions that make treating allergies difficult. Here are five tips for managing allergies in the elderly.
1. Recognize the Triggers
To provide the best care for your senior loved one, you need to know what triggers his or her allergies. Common triggers include pine trees, grass, pollen, smoke, dust, mold, and chlorine. Be on the lookout for allergy symptoms like a runny nose and watery eyes, and take note of the environment that causes them. If you understand what causes your loved one’s allergies to flare up, you can insulate him or her from unhealthy triggers.
Seniors can face a variety of challenges as they age, many of which can be mitigated with the help of professional in-home caregivers who provide high-quality home care. Naples families trust in Home Care Assistance to help their elderly loved ones age in place safely and comfortably.
2. Create a Healthy Environment
When seniors are allergic to pollen and other outdoor substances, they may want to stay indoors while allergy season is at its peak. Prevent your loved one from inhaling toxic substances by keeping the windows closed. Dust and clean regularly to ensure the indoor environment is allergen-free. If it gets too stuffy inside, turn on a fan or an air conditioner rather than opening a window. While insulating your loved one from fresh air may not seem ideal, it may be a necessary precaution if he or she has strong allergic reactions to pollen.
3. Understand the Dangers
Allergies pose a greater threat for seniors than they do for younger people. Symptoms such as nasal congestion can cause shortness of breath and worsen existing cardiovascular conditions. Allergy symptoms can exacerbate many preexisting health issues, ranging from COPD to high blood pressure. Caregivers and seniors shouldn’t treat allergic reactions as an unavoidable disease. Instead, they should treat allergies as potentially harmful threats to health. If your loved one has difficulty managing allergies, help him or her take action to mitigate the symptoms.
Seniors who experience allergic reactions on a regular basis should consider scheduling a medical checkup. Aging adults who need help around the house, transportation to medical appointments and social events, and assistance with exercise can benefit from having an in-home caregiver. With the help of Home Care Assistance Naples, seniors can enjoy greater independence and receive regular mental and social stimulation when relying on a trusted professional who is expertly trained in various aspects of senior care.
4. Avoid Antihistamines
For many seniors, antihistamines are the first line of defense against allergic reactions. While antihistamines are effective, they can also be harmful for seniors and cause side effects like dry mouth, confusion, dizziness, and urinary retention. Seniors with existing conditions may not want to take a chance on a medication that could leave them feeling confused or dizzy. Antihistamines are also known for producing dangerous side effects when combined with other medications, including those used to lower blood pressure. When selecting medications for your loved one, make sure to avoid any that could negatively impact his or her health. In lieu of antihistamines, many seniors are prescribed topical medications and nasal steroids.
5. Talk to Your Loved One’s Doctor
Many people don’t consider allergies to be a real medical condition. Because of the impact allergies can have on seniors, inform your loved one’s doctor about the allergic reactions. The doctor will be able to prescribe a method of treatment that doesn’t exacerbate other health conditions.
Allergies are just one of the many health issues seniors are susceptible to. Aging in place can present a few unique challenges for older adults. Some only require part-time assistance with exercise or meal preparation, while others are living with serious illnesses and benefit more significantly from receiving 24-hour care. Naples Home Care Assistance are leaders in the elderly in-home care industry for good reason. We tailor our care plans based on each senior’s individual needs, our caregivers continue to receive updated training in senior care as new developments arise, and we also offer comprehensive care for seniors with Alzheimer’s, dementia, and Parkinson’s. To learn about our high-quality in-home care options, give us a call at (239) 449-4701 today.