The trees and flowers are in bloom, so take a deep breath and enjoy it…or maybe not.
Does the start of allergy season give you a runny nose, itchy eyes, and sneezing? You’re probably tired of experiencing the same symptoms year after year.
So what is the best allergy medicine? Keep reading this guide to the best allergy medicine and find out what you should use for the most relief!
What Are Seasonal Allergies and What Are the Symptoms?
Seasonal allergies will typically surface around the same months each year. For most people, it starts in January and goes into the early summer months. It is often caused by allergies to trees, pollen, grass, or all of the above.
Pollen in the air can cause hay fever. The symptoms can vary depending on the person. But they will usually include itching, sneezing, watery eyes and a runny nose.
But if you experience allergies throughout the year, you probably have perennial allergies. This can be caused by allergies to things that are common in your home, like mold, dust, insects, or pets.
Whether you have seasonal allergies or experience them year-round, your body is trying to fight off the allergens. Other than the symptoms of hay fever, you might also experience coughing or wheezing, headaches, congestion, fatigue and more.
The short answer to the best allergy medicine is that it depends. The type of allergies you have and the symptoms will all affect which type of medication is best suited for your needs. Keep reading to find out which medication is best for you.
Best Antihistamine Medications
If you have seasonal allergies and your symptoms are watery eyes and a runny nose, you’re probably looking for an antihistamine at the pharmacy.
These medications work by blocking histamine chemicals, which would normally cause allergy symptoms. If you have long-lasting symptoms, you may need to switch up your medication. This is because antihistamines lose effectiveness in three weeks if you take them every day.
One of the most popular antihistamines on the market is Allegra. This medicine is known for working fast for both indoor and outdoor allergies. Allegra is meant to work for 24 hours and provides a non-drowsy formula.
Another popular antihistamine is Zyrtec which can provide immediate relief for allergy symptoms. This also comes in a children’s formula and parents who have reviewed it say that it works well for their kids.
Claratin is another brand you’ve probably heard of before. The active ingredient in this medication is called loratadine, which is broken down in the liver. This antihistamine is fast-acting and promises to help with allergy symptoms.
Benefits of Benadryl
Benadryl is a very common antihistamine. This is used when people are experiencing immediate allergy symptoms that need to be soothed. This medication has been a leader in treating allergy symptoms caused by pollen.
One downside is that this pill usually makes people drowsy, so it’s often not taken every day like the other antihistamines listed above.
There are some customers who say that Benadryl is the only allergy medication that provides the immediate relief they need.
Best Decongestant Allergy Medications
Another type of allergy medication is a decongestant. You usually have to request these from the pharmacist directly if it includes Sudafed or Afrin.
These active ingredients improve breathing. They can also help you to feel relief from sinus congestion. Also, if you’re experiencing congestion and other allergy symptoms, like watery eyes, you might need a combination.
Medications like Allegra-D or Claritin-D allow you to have both an antihistamine and a decongestant. So it’s possible you can target different symptoms at the same time.
But, you might want to talk to your doctor if you have high blood pressure or glaucoma. Decongestants can be dangerous for people with these medical issues.
Nasal Steroid Medications
The last type of allergy medication is a nasal steroid, which can be used if you have seasonal allergies or year-round allergy symptoms.
Nasonex, Flonase, and Rhinocort are some of the most common medications. These often take longer to relieve allergy symptoms than an antihistamine. But they are very effective for nasal allergies. You might see longer relief from a runny nose with a nasal steroid.
Rhinocort is one of the top nasal steroids and offers a spray that can clear allergy symptoms for 24-hours. It can also drastically help with runny eyes and even congestion. Especially if allergy pills haven’t worked for you, trying a nasal spray might be exactly what your body needs.
These medications work early on in your allergic reaction. They can also prevent symptoms from appearing or from overpowering you.
More Tips on Choosing an Allergy Medication
If you’re worried about avoiding drowsiness, your best bet is to go with a newer medication.
Medications that have been on the market for a long time, like Benadryl, will often cause drowsiness. But if you opt for a newer antihistamine, like Allegra, Claritin, or Zyrtec, you can often avoid sleepiness.
You may also be wondering if you need a prescription for any of the medications you’ll need. Most of the medications listed above are all over-the-counter, meaning no prescription is necessary.
But, if you’re looking to get a nasal spray, you may need to request a prescription from your doctor. Medications like Flonase are often given with a prescription. Also, if you have additional symptoms, like asthma caused by allergies, you’ll likely need an inhaler prescribed by a doctor.
What Is the Best Allergy Medicine?
If you’re still wondering “what is the best allergy medicine?” it’s important to focus on which medications will relieve your symptoms. As mentioned above, if you have seasonal allergies with symptoms like a runny nose, watery eyes, and sneezing, you’ll probably need an antihistamine.
Decongestants and nasal steroids also provide relief from allergy symptoms. Selecting the right medication for you will help you to avoid suffering through the Spring and Summer months!
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