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Air quality and Pollen

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Air quality and Pollen

Old 03-28-20, 05:10 PM
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nob
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Air quality and Pollen

guys - I give up biking 2 months of the year due to heavy tree pollen and finding alternatives. Has anybody used a mask that doesn't affect air flow and gives you a comfortable ride keeping the pollen out? Or has anybody used a forced air helmet which is typically used in UTV off-road racing

Thx
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Old 03-28-20, 05:56 PM
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Yeah, it's been so bad this year my allergy symptoms match most symptoms for the coronavirus infection, other than a fever.

I've tried riding with surgical masks but it's miserable, even in winter.

All I could do is double up on the usual allergy precautions and avoid riding outdoors on the worst days. I'm taking Zyrtec in daytime and Xyzal at night -- and I might just skip the Zyrtec and stick with the Xyzal, which seems to work better. Albuterol and Flonase several times a day. Saline nasal rinses. Aspirin and diclofenac for the chronic respiratory and sinus inflammation.

I have Sudafed and Primatene tablets (ephedrine with guaifenesin expectorant) but those elevate my heart rate and blood pressure, so I take 'em only when absolutely necessary.

Nasal decongestants like oxymetazoline help with short term congestion but the rebound effect basically makes them addictive -- the more we use them, the more we need them. So I try to stick with saline nasal rinses.

Other than that, I got nuthin'. Sucks for folks with serious respiratory allergies.
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Old 03-29-20, 06:50 PM
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I can't use any of these medication as they stopped working on me long time ago

Has anybody used special masks or forced air helmets that allow you to breathe as usual but provide pollen protection

Thx
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Old 03-29-20, 07:04 PM
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https://www.independent.co.uk/extras...-a7952771.html

Pretty sure there's no practical way to get a forced air helmet to work on a bike. Also, maybe it's just me but having anything on my face/mouth while breathing heavily is unpleasant/feels like suffocating and I think best case with a mask I'd be able to commute at a leisurely pace, but would have to save hard rides for indoors on the trainer if my allergies were that bad.
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Old 03-29-20, 07:25 PM
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Not sure if it works for everyone, but local raw unfiltered honey is working pretty good for me.
I got this 3lb bottle from Costco - I believe they carry local for each store/state - and a fifth of it is gone and my itchy eyes are gone or very mild.
I do nasal wash after the ride and not using much Flonase that I used to spray twice on past season.
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Old 03-30-20, 08:36 PM
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BTW, if you haven't already done so, consider some methodical changes in diet to see if it helps with chronic allergies. I've done that over the past few years and it did help.

The biggest single change was eliminating beer. I loved beer but it doesn't love me. Within an hour I'd get the same symptoms I get from nasal allergies -- congestion, dull headache, slightly sore throat, etc. The next day I'd have hangover type symptoms from a single beer. I tried modifying my beer drinking, thinking it might be due to the hops or particular grain or other factor, but there was no definite, repeatable improvement other than just quitting beer completely. Didn't really matter whether it was my favorite 6% ABV super-hoppy ale, 11% dark winter brew, or can of Bud or Lone Star. It was all pretty much the same. Might have also been due to my thyroid problem and auto-immune disorder, but whatever... giving up beer eliminated one pesky problem that felt like nasal allergy symptoms.

Some friends who've gone full-carnivorous diet say it eliminated many of their health problems including chronic allergies. They were surprised to find it cleared up their nasal allergies too, not just digestive allergies. Worth a try.

I'm not a zealot about anything in my diet, but I'll try anything for awhile just to see if it helps.
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Old 04-01-20, 09:18 AM
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still looking for mask recommendations and/or helmet recommendations with forced air. I appreciate all the dietary changes but I've tried all that - I'm in my 8th year and trust me, tried almost everything the sun including going completely vegetarian for a year. The root of the issue is some of us are born with high IGE in our body and some aren't - take a look at it and you'll see the science behind allergies
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Old 04-01-20, 09:23 AM
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Originally Posted by canklecat View Post
BTW, if you haven't already done so, consider some methodical changes in diet to see if it helps with chronic allergies. I've done that over the past few years and it did help.

The biggest single change was eliminating beer. I loved beer but it doesn't love me. Within an hour I'd get the same symptoms I get from nasal allergies -- congestion, dull headache, slightly sore throat, etc. The next day I'd have hangover type symptoms from a single beer. I tried modifying my beer drinking, thinking it might be due to the hops or particular grain or other factor, but there was no definite, repeatable improvement other than just quitting beer completely. Didn't really matter whether it was my favorite 6% ABV super-hoppy ale, 11% dark winter brew, or can of Bud or Lone Star. It was all pretty much the same. Might have also been due to my thyroid problem and auto-immune disorder, but whatever... giving up beer eliminated one pesky problem that felt like nasal allergy symptoms.
.

IPA gives me the nasal allergy symptoms almost immediately and I canít drink Stouts or Porters (even one makes me sick).

i love IPA too much to give it up though...
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Old 04-01-20, 02:25 PM
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Originally Posted by nob View Post
still looking for mask recommendations and/or helmet recommendations with forced air. I appreciate all the dietary changes but I've tried all that - I'm in my 8th year and trust me, tried almost everything the sun including going completely vegetarian for a year. The root of the issue is some of us are born with high IGE in our body and some aren't - take a look at it and you'll see the science behind allergies
Oh, I know. Going through that myself. It got worse after an auto-immune disorder that killed my thyroid. But I'm still trying other things to minimize allergy symptoms.

I had appointments for ENT and allergist this month but had to postpone them due to the coronavirus pandemic. And I'm still waiting for a rheumatology consult.

The challenge with any air filter designed for wearing is impeded air flow. This makes it difficult to breathe with any exertion beyond a walking pace.

I've considered trying a homemade filter using the medium or large mesh electrostatic filter material that doesn't impede air flow. But I haven't found any designed specifically for respiratory protection. Without controlled manufacturing and lab tests there's no way of knowing whether we'd be exposing ourselves to worse hazards by wearing a respirator material designed for air conditioning systems.

Another possibility is a portable oxygen generator, which could be mounted on the bike.
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Old 04-01-20, 02:26 PM
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Originally Posted by phrantic09 View Post
IPA gives me the nasal allergy symptoms almost immediately and I canít drink Stouts or Porters (even one makes me sick).

i love IPA too much to give it up though...
A friend who's a brewmaster and owns a brewpub has the same reactions. He makes and drinks the stuff anyway. Hard to resist when those citrusy hops are so tasty.
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Old 04-04-20, 10:32 AM
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Originally Posted by nob View Post
still looking for mask recommendations and/or helmet recommendations with forced air. I appreciate all the dietary changes but I've tried all that - I'm in my 8th year and trust me, tried almost everything the sun including going completely vegetarian for a year. The root of the issue is some of us are born with high IGE in our body and some aren't - take a look at it and you'll see the science behind allergies
N95 filters pollen, assuming you wear it right. Fit the metal clip tightly to the bridge of your nose. If you fail to do that, the mask is 100% useless. At the bottom of the mask, make sure it is snug against the underside of your chin. Since you are a cyclist, you should have good to excellent lung capacity and no difficulty breathing through the mask.

The obvious downside is that N95 is not currently available in most markets due to Covid-19.
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