13 March 2013,
Summer brings with it a troubling assortment of allergies, which add to the seasonal woes, along with excessive heat. After Hrs tells brings you preventive measures
Mangoes and vacations make summers special, but the soaring temperatures, coupled with dust, makes this season an unbearable one. It is also that time of the year when allergies, especially respiratory and skin, are very common. Redness, dryness and itching of eyes, asthma attacks and rashes on the skin are some common allergy-related woes in summer. But worry not. Help is at hand, as experts tell After Hrs how to prevent these allergies in the months to come.
Dr Vijay Warad, allergist and pulmonologist, says that while pollen allergies are more common in rural areas, indoor allergies are commonplace in urban set-ups. “Dust mites are the biggest cause for allergies, followed by cockroaches and smoke. Fungus, which grows on damp wal
ls, also causes allergies,” states Dr Warad, adding that these agents may cause allergies affecting the not just the skin, eyes or scalp, but even induce cold and cough. The intensity of the allergy depends on the genetic makeup of the individual.
As far as cockroaches are concerned, make sure you keep your house free of them because their eggs may act as allergens. So, get a pest control treatment done if you’re facing a severe cockroach problem. “To keep dust mites away, get your pillow covers and cushions some sunlight, and ensure your house is regularly vacuumed,” says Dr Warad.
Dermatologist and cosmetologist Dilip Shah says that many summer allergies are a result of prolonged exposure to harsh sunlight, which contains the harmful UVA rays. “The UVA radiation may cause burns, redness, itching and small papular eruptions (ghamoriyan).
Since excessive sweating occurs in the summers, sweat itself can act as an allergen, making the body folds, like underarms, areas under the breasts and groin itch. “The sweat, combined with humidity, may also give rise to fungal infections,” adds Dr Shah.
To combat the harmful effects of sunlight and prevent skin allergies, Dr Shah advices using moisturisers and sunscreens to avoid UVA rays from damaging the skin. “Physical barriers are also very important, so using light cotton jackets and scarves is recommended,” concludes Dr Shah.