Common Medications and Treatments for Seasonal Allergies

The table below describes the common medications used to treat seasonal allergies. The doctor may prescribe a combination of these medications depending on your specific symptoms.

 

Drug Category

How it works

Antihistamines

 

  • Oral medications or nasal sprays that relieve sneezing and itching in the nose and eyes and reduce swelling and drainage in the nose
  • Some have side effects, such as drowsiness and loss of alertness and coordination, while others cause fewer of these side effects
  • Available in eye drops for eye allergy symptoms

Nasal corticosteroids

 

  • Nasal sprays that prevent or reduce inflammation in the sinuses and nasal passages

Cromolyn sodium

 

  • A nasal spray that helps prevent allergic rhinitis from starting by blocking the release of body chemicals that cause allergy symptoms

Decongestants

 

  • Oral medications that shrink nasal passages, which helps relieve congestion, swelling, and general discomfort in the sinuses and nose
Allergy shots
  • A series of injections containing small doses of your allergen, allowing your body to build up a natural immunity to the allergen

 

In addition, people with seasonal allergies can take the following steps to minimize contact with their seasonal allergens when possible.

 

Type of Allergy

Steps to minimize exposure

Allergic rhinitis
  • Limit outdoor activities when pollen counts are high.
Eye allergy
  • Wear sunglasses and a hat with a wide brim to reduce the amount of allergen that lands in the eyes.
  • Apply saline eye drops after being outdoors to wash allergens out of the eyes.
Mold allergy

 

  • Limit outdoor activities when mold counts are high.
  • Avoid uncut fields and raking leaves.
  • Take a shower after coming indoors to wash mold spores out of your hair.

 

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