Summer brings with it a unique mixture of allergies. Some of the allergens people are exposed to, especially during the summer months, are chlorine, bug spray, suntan lotion, molds, perfumes, and unexpected allergens during travel.
Chlorine and Bug Spray
Chlorine usage increases during summer time. Hotels and areas that want to keep molds down often use increased bleach concentrations during summer months to clean their bathrooms and public areas.
Public pools are required, by law, to use chlorine in their pools. Chlorine is also used to clean many of the fruits and vegetables you might find at your local grocers or farmer’s market.
If you are allergic or sensitive to chlorine, this extra exposure could ruin your summer plans. Indications of chlorine allergy can include excessive redness of eyes after swimming in a public pool, rash, dizziness, flu-like symptoms and fatigue.
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However, there are some things you can do to reduce exposure and counteract the effects of this chemical.
As with most allergens, avoidance is the best policy. Someone with a chlorine allergy should try to swim at local lakes or rivers instead of public pools. Green juices and green herbs can help counteract the effects of chlorine.
Some good choices are wheat grass juice, celery juice (with carrots or apples for taste), spinach and tomato juice (tomatoes also protects the body against the sun), nettles, alfalfa, mint, or dandelion leaf tea.
Another allergen that is on the rise during the summer months is bug spray. Bug sprays work by repelling insects away from your skin so most contain powerful chemicals that provide this service. The most popular bug sprays can contain DEET or Picaridin (EPA).
It is hard to counteract exposure to chemicals, especially if you are allergic or have chemical sensitivities. If a person needs to use a bug spray it should be used outdoors and away from other people. It is better to use natural bug sprays instead of chemical ones.
Making homemade bug spray is also an option. Although there are many different recipes for homemade bug spray and many recommend citronella or eucalyptus, I usually recommend something that is mint based as many people have reactions to citronella, eucalyptus and or flower-based essential oils like lavender.
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Sunscreens and Suntan Lotion
Sunscreens are another allergen that people are exposed to during the sunny summer months.
Most sunscreens work because they contain either an organic chemical compound that absorbs ultraviolet light (such as oxybenzone) or an opaque material that reflects light (such as titanium dioxide and zinc oxide), or a combination of both.
Even people with dark skin need to protect their skin against UV rays from the sun.
According to Thompson Healthcare’s report on suntan lotions, there is a long list of ingredients that can be found in sunscreens, the most popular being lisadimate, aminobenzoic acid, padimate O or roxadimate. (solveyourproblem.com)
Poisoning can occur with the para-aminobenzoic acid agent found in some tanning lotions in people who are allergic to this chemical. Signs of an allergic reaction include shortness of breath, eye or nose irritation, rash, anxiety and vomiting.
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