When you have that miserable, stuffy, sneezy, stopped-up feeling from allergies, all you really feel like doing is climbing into bed or relaxing on the couch and taking whatever your doctor has prescribed. Probably the last thing on your mind is exercising! How can you run when you can’t breathe? How do you stretch when you’re sneezing all the time? The experts at American Family Care say a mix of the traditional and the alternative might just be your best course of treatment.

Stress and Allergies

Feeling miserable is stressful! You’re stuffy, coughing, maybe even having trouble sleeping. It all adds up to a major stress bomb on your body. Stress can activate your body’s “fight or flight” response, which can compromise your immune system even more. The prescription; find ways to relax and unwind. Gentle and moderate exercise may just be the best medicine.

Relaxation RX

Many practitioners of yoga swear by its healing powers. The simple acts of mindful breathing and meditation can help clear your head and increase oxygen. Yoga site Gaiam offers some poses that might bring relief to symptoms as well.

  • Inversions – Shoulder Stand and other Inversions can open nasal passages and improve drainage. They should not be held for more than a minute or two so they can’t create too much pressure.
  • Plow – This releases pressure in the muscles at the base of the skull and back of the neck.
  • Bridge and other Backbends – These open up the chest and lungs, increasing lung capacity.

Of course, yoga practiced outside and in nature feels great, but practicing indoors is probably best until the worst of your allergy triggers are gone.

Running to Relieve Rhinitis

The jury is still out on this one, but at least one small study from Thailand found that running actually helped relieve allergy symptoms in the majority of the subjects tested. Allergy sufferers ran for 30 minutes. Afterward, they reported that their sneezing, runny nose, nasal itching and congestion all decreased by more than 70 percent. Scientists theorize that moderate-paced cardio exercise can calm inflammatory proteins in nasal passages.

The Right Care. Right Now.

American Family Care is health care made easy. Whether you feel your symptoms coming on and want to see a doctor fast or if you want to be more proactive, our convenient location and extended hours are sure to suit your schedule.