For the mesothelioma patient, spring brings the pleasures of blossoming trees, flower buds and fresh new grass. But even if the mesothelioma patient didn’t have seasonal allergies before, the progression of their illness and its treatment may make them more vulnerable to the seasonal effects of pollen.
Seasonal allergies – sneezing, runny nose, burning eyes – could worsen a mesothelioma patient’s symptoms and prevent them from getting the rest they need to feel their best.
Here are some suggestions from the Department of Pulmonary, Allergy and Critical Care Medicine at the Cleveland Clinic and the Mayo Clinic.
Reduce Outdoor Exposure to Allergens
- Keep the mesothelioma patient indoors on dry windy days.
- Remove clothes worn outside and shower to rinse pollen from skin and hair
- Avoid taking the mesothelioma patient out in the morning when pollen counts are highest
- Have the mesothelioma patient wear a dust mask when going outdoors
- Check your local TV, radio station or local newspaper, or the Internet for pollen forecasts and current pollen levels.
Keep Indoor Air As Clean As Possible
There is no way to remove all allergens from your home but here are some things that may help.
- Use air conditioning in your house and car.
- If you have forced air heating or air conditioning in your house, use high-efficiency filters and follow regular maintenance schedules.
- Keep indoor air dry with a dehumidifier.
- Clean floors often with a vacuum cleaner that has a HEPA filter
Make the Mesothelioma Patient’s Bedroom A Dust-Free Zone
A mesothelioma patient’s room needs to be as dust-free and clutter-free as possible.
- Dust mite-proof the bed. Use zippered covers for pillow, mattress and box springs. Wash and dry on high heat, don’t hang outdoors. Swap out down covers and pillows for synthetic ones.
- Use a portable high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter in your bedroom. These small portable units trap allergens.
- Ban ceiling fans. They collect dust on their blades and fling the dust around the room when running.
- Remove Rover and other pets from the bedroom. They can visit but to reduce pet dander, they should not sleep on or near the bed. Relocate cages for hamsters, guinea pigs, birds and other critters.