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Surprising Dangers of Common Seasonal Allergies - and How to Avoid Them

Posted By Regan Zambri Long, PLLC || 24-Apr-2017

As April showers bring May flowers, so also come the sneezing, sniffling, watery eyes and more. For the millions who suffer from common seasonal allergies, these symptoms can be little more than an annoyance, but occasionally they can get out of hand, causing severe reactions or unforeseen dangers.

What are some examples of seasonal allergies turning dangerous?

  • Allergies may be more severe one year than the next. The medicine you keep in stock might no longer do the trick, causing your symptoms to become crippling.
  • Allergy medicines expire. That medicine you use four weeks out of the year might have lost its potency. Your symptoms could turn dangerous if you’re using an expired inhaler to breathe, or even deadly if you try to use an expired EpiPen to treat a severe allergic reaction or anaphylaxis.
  • Your allergy meds might react to other medications, prompting a trip to the emergency room.
  • You could become unsafe at work or behind the wheel. Many allergy medications cause drowsiness. Driving under the influence of too much Benadryl can be just as dangerous as driving drunk.

What You Can Do to Protect Yourself?

You can stay safe during allergy season mainly by being proactive. Here are some specific tips:

  • Never make assumptions about your allergies. Some years are worse than others for allergens. If your medicine isn’t working, see a doctor.
  • Always heed drug warnings. If the warning says not to drive or use heavy machinery—don’t.
  • Always check the expiration dates. If your medicine is expired, recycle and replace it.
  • Monitor yourself when taking any new drug. Pay attention to any potentially dangerous side effects and get help if needed.
  • See an allergist for further testing. Isolating the exact cause(s) of your allergies can help your doctor prescribe more effective treatments for them.

For more springtime safety information, see our posts on Spring Yard Work: Guidelines for Preventing Injury and 7 Spring Driving Tips.

If you or someone you love has been a victim of medical error, we can help. Call our Washington D.C. medical malpractice attorneys for more information.

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