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Your Guide For A Symptom-Free Christmas & New Year

Welcome to the December Edition Of Our E-Newsletter - Your Guide For A Symptom-Free Christmas & New Year. As I researched what bothers allergy sufferers this time of year, my mind drifted to Santa Claus, and what an allergic mess he must be. Just think, his nose is probably nice and rosy from chimney soot irritation. Not to mention that he's been breathing in air fresh off the backs of 11 furry reindeer, and he's spent the 11 months leading up to this cherished season holed away in a toy factory with industrial dust, chemical irritants and dry skin (he lives in the North Pole after all). Let's just hope Santa isn't dairy or tree-nut allergic or those milk and cookies some families leave for him could mean no presents for millions of children!

Santa may be more of an allergy nightmare waiting to happen than you are; however, plenty of allergic triggers may be irritating your health this season. Whether it's your sister's cat, or Grandma's old plush couch, we have some tips for how you can stay healthy this holiday season.

If you're new to the newsletter or you'd like to reread any of our newsletters, visit our newsletter archive.


Katie Weaver & The National Allergy Newsletter Team

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National Allergy E-Mail Newsletter

Your Guide For Symptom-Free Holidays

Allergy-Safe Christmas Decorating

Decorating our homes is as much a part of Christmas as presents and fruitcake. Allergy sufferers should take special precautions when decorating:
  • Wash your tree and greenery before setting them up in order to remove pollens and other irritants. An artificial tree and garland is another option for allergy sufferers. An irritant mask and (non-latex) protective gloves are good options if you must be in contact with greenery.
  • Be careful around poinsettias. Did you know that those with latex-allergy can react adversely to poinsettias? The plants are closely related to natural rubber latex. Read More...
  • Use plastic, wood and glass ornaments and decorations that don't harbor dust mites. If you must have that big stuffed snowman toy on the rocking chair, spray him with Anti-Allergen Solution to denature the allergens he collected in the attic.
  • While snuggling in front of a warm hearth is the essence of holidays for many, wood-burning fireplaces can be a major trigger for asthmatics and should be avoided if possible.
  • Scented candles, room sprays and other potpourri can also be irritants to asthmatics and other chemically sensitive individuals. If you're trying to mask the smell of burnt Christmas cookies or moth balls, use Odor Neutralizer spray which eliminates odors instead of covering them up.

Breathe Cleaner Air Away From Home

If you are going to be the guest in someone else's home during the holidays, you may have more limited options for creating an allergy-safe environment, but here are a few tips you can try:
  • Electrolux Oxygen 3 Ultra HEPA VacuumBring your own pillow and mattress encasings. Who knows how old your Grandmother's guest room mattress is: you're best breathing mite-free air at night.
  • Avoid relatives' homes with pets, or ask your hosts to keep any pets confined to certain areas away from you. I find that if my friends with pets will vacuum with a HEPA Vacuum before my arrival, and run a room air cleaner while I'm there, I'm much less prone to allergic reaction to cat and dog dander. You may also want a portable HEPA purifier should your hosts not have one.
  • Another portable way to avoid some allergic reactions, and even colds and the flu is to wash out your nose daily with a mild saline solution. Nasopure is a portable nasal rinsing option that can keep you breathing clean while you're away from home.

Have a Joyful Christmas With Less Stress

Holiday stress isn't just a frustration; it can also make you more susceptible to asthma attacks, colds, and the flu. Stress wears on our immune systems, and for those with certain allergic conditions there is direct correlation between high stress and asthma attacks or eczema flare-ups.
  • IsoPerfect Side Sleeper PillowBe attuned to your stressors: if you feel shortness of breath or wheezing coming on take some deep breaths and focus on something positive to calm your nerves.
  • Get good sleep. Restless nights can exacerbate stress and other health problems, so rest better.
  • Ease sinus or headache pressure with a Warm/Cool Eye Mask
  • If stress is settling in your lower back or shoulders, try Medibeads Moist Heat Therapy Wraps.
  • Build up your worn down immune system with Dr. Burgstiner's supplements for thymus and liver health, good digestion and essential flora.
  • Regular exercise can fend off a variety of illnesses. Don't let cold weather keep you from being active. Try yoga or Pilates to give your body a moderate work-out while easing stress.

Holiday Warnings For The Food-Allergic

Christmas season is packed with some of the yummiest goodies of the year, but they're also potentially the most dangerous for food allergy sufferers.
  • Avoid others' home-baked goods which have no ingredient listings and could have had contact with offending allergens during preparation.
  • Parents should pack special treats for their children on class holiday party days, and even at family events.
  • Many popular holiday food items contain eggs, dairy and tree nuts, some of the most common food allergens. Avoid fruitcake, eggnog, glazed rolls or bread, appetizer quiches and the mixed nut bowl.
  • Make sure family and friends are aware of your or your child's allergies and let them know what to do in case of emergency.
  • Those highly sensitive to food should have a self-injectable epinephrine available just in case.
Have a very happy holiday season. I hope it is allergy symptom-free and full of the joy of good friends and family.

National Allergy E-Mail Newsletter The information in this newsletter is for educational purposes only. Always consult with your doctor first about your specific condition, treatment options and other health concerns you may have.

Remember that our customer service representatives have plenty of experience guiding people through the options for allergy, asthma and sinus relief, so feel free to contact us by calling one of our phone experts at 1-800-522-1448 Monday through Friday between the hours of 9:00 am and 5:30 pm Eastern Time. You can also e-mail us at


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