Spring is Here – So Is Allergy Relief

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Spring is here!!!

At least that’s what the calender says. With Spring’s sunshine and flowers come wind and pollen, which for many people signals the onset of allergy season.

Tree pollens are the most prevalent pollens in the spring and many trees are prolific pollinators. Grass and weed pollens follow in late spring and summer, and airborne mold spores can be found almost year round, as well as other common allergens such as dust, dust mites, and animal dander.

While many over-the-counter remedies promise symptomatic relief, practitioners of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) believe that addressing the causes of allergies, treating the whole person and focusing on balancing the immune system leads to substantial long-term health benefits in managing allergies.

Allergies and Traditional Chinese Medicine

TCM often views allergic rhinitis as related to Wind noting that symptoms come and go rapidly, cause congestion, and make the person want to avoid Windy situations. This Wind often coexists with a deficiency of the Protective or Wei Qi (pronounced chee). The nearest thing we associate with the Wei Qi in the West is resistance to colds and other respiratory infections. People with Wei Qi deficiency catch colds easily, and allergy symptoms may be particularly bad in the spring or fall, seasons which are generally windy.

The acupuncturist also looks for constitutional or more deeply-rooted signs in each person who presents with allergies. The principle here is treating the whole person. The goal of the acupuncturist is to develop a plan which addresses the person’s acute symptoms and provides relief, while addressing the underlying  immune sysgem imbalance which is thought to be at the root of the person’s allergies.  Treatments often include acupuncture, specifically chosen herbal formulas, and dietary modification.