As we hit the middle of May, we’re right in the middle of springtime and everything that comes with it. Nice temperatures, the blooming of flowers and trees, plenty of sunshine, spring cleaning. All great things, right? But for many, it’s also allergy season.
You know the feeling. You walk outside on a beautiful day and all of a sudden you’re sniffling and sneezing and constantly pulling from the tissue box. Many people’s first instinct is to pop an antihistamine like Zyrtec or Claritin and go about their day.
Others with more severe allergies take medications consistently to try and prevent the side effects.
But researchers in Germany have found that there’s an alternative for antihistamines when it comes to treating allergic rhinitis and sinus disorders—acupuncture.
All of the patients involved in the study suffered from seasonal allergic rhinitis for over two years and fell within the age range of 16-45. They were broke into three groups—one receiving acupuncture, one receiving dummy acupuncture, and one receiving the antihistamine Cetirizine (in the U.S., commonly known as Zyrtec).
While the folks receiving both the “real” and “fake” acupuncture treatments were encouraged to take antihistamines on their own throughout the 8-week trial period, the study showed that the group receiving acupuncture didn’t feel the need to take their antihistamines as often as the others. That’s because acupuncture was found to be a far better alternative than merely taking medication.
“The researchers add, seasonal allergic rhinitis ‘symptoms decreased significantly in the acupuncture group compared with the other study groups,’" the study says.
When the weather turns for springtime, allergies can really put a damper on quality of life and the ability to live an active lifestyle. If you’re one of the many people who dread the coming sniffles and sore throats, acupuncture can help you get back to enjoying this beautiful time of the year.