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Friday
Apr042014

Reducing Stress May Help Reduce Allergy Symptoms

Alliance/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Spring has sprung on allergy sufferers, but new research shows eliminating stress in a person’s life may help alleviate symptoms such as sneezing, a runny nose and watery eyes.

In a study published in the Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology, researchers at Ohio State University analyzed 179 patients for three months and found those who reported allergy flare-ups also experienced more stress than those who did not record allergy symptoms during that time period.

Of the 39 percent who had more than one allergy flare-up, 64 percent had more than four episodes over two, 14-day periods.

The study notes no patients reported allergy flare-ups and stress on the same day, but a number of them reported allergy episodes within days of increased daily stress.

"Stress can cause several negative effects on the body, including causing more symptoms for allergy sufferers," said allergist Amber Patterson, MD, lead study author. "Our study also found those with more frequent allergy flares also have a greater negative mood, which may be leading to these flares.”

Dr. Patterson notes that sneezing, a runny nose and watery eyes can cause additional stress for allergy sufferers, and may even be the root of stress for some.

She says alleviating stress won't cure allergies, but “it may help decrease episodes of intense symptoms.”

The study recommends allergy sufferers try to alleviate stress through deep breathing, meditation and adoption of a healthier lifestyle by eating right and getting the proper amount of sleep. They also advise sufferers to avoid things such as caffeine and smoking when they are feeling stress because they can do more harm than good.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio