How to Manage Allergies While at Work
Allergies can be distracting and annoying, especially when they get triggered while you’re at work which makes it hard to thread through your workload. Itching, sneezing, watery eyes, and headaches due to nasal congestion can make you lose your focus and your medication can cause you to doze off while on duty.
The first step is to identify the source of your allergy. Be aware of your allergic reactions and identify the allergens present at your workplace that can trigger these symptoms. Dust and mold are the most common workplace allergens.
Limit not eliminate – Elimination of allergens is not always possible, so try your best to limit your exposure to it to avoid symptoms to be triggered. Cut the number of allergens at your workplace by keeping your desk dust-free, consider using a HEPA filter, and clean/replace carpets that are dusty or moldy.
When it comes to allergy medication, nasal sprays, eye drops, and oral antihistamines are common staples. Ask your physician to prescribe you a non-drowsy option if available. Second-generation antihistamines are low- to non-sedating, examples are loratadine, desloratadine, and fexofenadine.
Immunotherapy may also be an option in managing your allergies, especially for those with moderate to severe allergies. These allergy shots are proven to lessen one’s sensitivities to allergens, and thus lessening as well the need for medications. However, the process of immunotherapy takes time as it requires a sequence of shots and takes a few months to a year to make an improvement.
Always visit your allergist if there’s an onset of new symptoms and/or if there’s a change needed in your medication.