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  • No Allergy Vacation: Don’t Let Allergens Ruin Spring Break

    Before your family hits the road, complete these allergen-busting tasks ahead of time to help everyone feel their best on vacation.

    • Spring break is the perfect opportunity for you and your family to take a well-deserved vacation—so you don’t want allergy symptoms tagging along as an uninvited guest. The good news: you can help keep allergies at bay on your trip with a few simple preparedness tasks. Add these to-dos to your list before you head out, so you can focus on having fun—not having the sniffles.

      1. Create an allergy first aid travel kit

      When you create your packing list, make sure to include standard things you use at home to help mitigate allergies, like over-the-counter allergy tablets, EpiPens, eye drops and tissues. But don’t forget, allergy triggers at your destination might be different from those in your home city.

      If you’re going somewhere dry or traveling by plane, saline spray can help ease itchy noses and throats.¹ If you’re worried about allergens on the fabrics in your room, bringing your own clean pillowcase from home can help you avoid sneaky particles hiding in the linens.

      2. Research outdoor air quality and pollen count

      The airborne particles you encounter in your city throughout the year won’t be the same in other parts of the country—or even the state. For example, ragweed pollen is most prominent in Midwestern and Eastern parts of the country.² But if you visit a busy West Coast city, like Los Angeles or Phoenix, you’re more likely to encounter ozone and particle pollution that creates smog.³

      When it comes to pollen, you can find out what you’re up against by checking your vacation spot’s pollen count here. Pollen count is measured by the amount of pollen particles in one cubic meter of air and measured on a scale of “low” to “very high.” Keep an eye on the allergens you’re sensitive to, as well as those you might not normally be exposed to—you might encounter a trigger that you’re not aware of.

      Likewise, checking the air quality index (AQI) can help you understand how polluted outdoor air at your destination is at different times of day. The lower the number on the AQI scale, the better the air quality. For example, if you’re traveling to a busy city that has a spike in particle pollution during rush hour, you can plan indoor activities for a few hours in the morning and the afternoon. You can check the AQI via the Filtrete™ Smart App. The app lets you save multiple locations, so you can check the air quality at home and as you travel. You can also check AQI at airnow.gov.

      3. Ask your host or hotel some indoor air quality questions

      When you’re on vacation, you probably won’t have access to as many indoor air filtration options as you would at home. If you’re worried about dust, dander, mold or mildew in the place you’re staying, give the host or hotel a call to see what your options are. They might be able to provide additional accommodations to help with your allergies. Ask these questions when you’re on the phone:
       

      • Does our room have an air conditioning unit, air purifier or fan? Can we get access to one?
      • Do the bathrooms and kitchen areas have exhaust fans?
      • Is this building pet-free? Are there any pet-free floors or areas?
      • Could we have our room dusted before we arrive?

      Once you’ve checked these tasks off your list, you can rest easier knowing you’re prepared for a no allergy vacation—no matter what allergens you’re up against.

      Sources

      1. CDC.gov: Common Cold

      2. AsthmaAndAllergies.org: Ragweed Allergy

      3. Lung.org: Most Polluted Cities

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