Be Aware of Holiday Allergens
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4 Tips About Holiday Allergens That You May Not be Aware Of

Posted on Wednesday, December 17th, 2014 at 7:00 am
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The holidays can be fun.  Unfortunately, they can also make things very difficult for those with allergies.  Here is some advice on what to watch out for.The holiday season can be one that is exciting, busy, and happy. It also can be filled with allergens that you, or your loved ones, need to avoid in order to stay healthy. The trick is to avoid as many allergy triggers as possible while traveling and visiting other people’s homes. That’s not easy! Here are some tips about holiday allergens that you may not be aware of.

4 Tips About Holiday Allergens

Dusty Decorations
Plastic Christmas trees sit in storage for the majority of the year. When Christmas rolls around again, those trees can be covered with a lot of dust. Make sure to thoroughly clean them off before bringing them inside.

Boxes of Christmas ornaments, and other holiday decorations, can also gather a lot of dust. People tend to bring in the boxes without realizing how much dust is on the box itself. Plastic tubs that are airtight can keep ornaments from collecting dust. The tub itself, though, should be wiped down before it comes inside the house.

People with dust allergies may have issues when visiting other people’s homes. There’s no way to know how much dust is attached to their Christmas tree. Another problem with dust comes from being “cooped up” indoors for a long time while the weather is cold. Dust can build up and be spread around.

Allergens in Plants
Real Christmas trees can be lovely. They can also cause allergic reactions to people who have an allergy to pine or fir. A real Christmas tree can also contain mold that cannot be seen by the naked eye. The scent, pollen, and mold spread through the air.

Wreaths that are made from real pine or fir branches cause the same problems. In addition, some people are allergic to poinsettias. This allergy can be very serious. This is something to consider if you, or a loved one, will be spending time at the home of family members who have unwittingly filled the air with allergens.

Holiday Food
What’s in those Christmas cookies? Can you be absolutely certain that the allergy-free food did not get cross contaminated? When in doubt, people with food allergies have no choice other than to not eat. That’s no fun at all, especially if the person gets hungry.

One option is to bring your own allergy-friendly version of the holiday food to the party or family gathering. You can be certain about exactly what is in those cookies and that nothing else has touched them.

Bring Your Medications
People who have allergies should bring all of their medications with them to the holiday party or gathering. There is always a chance that a mistake will be made, or something unexpected will happen, that exposes you to an allergen. Follow your doctor’s instructions and take your allergy medications as prescribed.

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Good Tip: Saving money is important – especially if you have a lot of expenses like bills to pay, loans to pay off, and all the other things that drain your bank account. Figuring out a way to save money can feel tedious to some, and like a punishment to others. U.S. News suggests that you try one of these money saving challenges. The “No Eating Out for a Month” Challenge This one is self-explanatory. The goal is to avoid eating out for an entire month. This might be super easy for people who enjoy making meals at home. People who really enjoy dining out, or ordering food to be sent to their home, may struggle with this one. It’s worth a try because spending money on take-out is more expensive than buying groceries. The Pantry Challenge This one is a variation of the “No Eating Out for a Month” challenge. The goal is to use up all of your groceries before you buy more. It forces you to try and remember why you bought a food or beverage that you don’t know what to do with, and gives you the opportunity to find a way to use it. The one exemption to this challenge is the foods that have expired. Don’t eat them! Throw them in the trash. The “No Spend” Challenge Make a goal to avoid spending money during an entire weekend. The only exemption in this challenge is that you are allowed to pay bills. This challenge is interesting because it requires creativity. You must be creative and find workarounds for problems that you would typically solve by spending money. You may have a different outlook on spending after finishing this challenge.