I've suffered from spring allergy symptoms for years, with the exception of two all-too-brief years when I was working with a healer from China who made me feel like I was superhuman and physically invincible (man, do I miss him). I really don't like to take any medicine, unless I'm practically dying and nothing else has worked, because I'm not a fan of chemicals and additives. Fortunately, there are a lot of things you can do to ease the discomfort and the pain of seasonal allergy symptoms and not compromise your health in other ways to do so.
Butterbur has been used as an anti-spasmodic and to heal headaches and asthma symptoms since ancient times, making it ideal for allergy relief. A teaspoon of the root can be boiled in a cup of water and drank as a tea or drops can be used as a tincture. Much safer and easier to use, a supplement form of butterbur can be found in most natural food stores. Unfortunately, as most seasonal allergy sufferers are allergic to ragweed, be forewarned that this herb is in the ragweed and marigold family so use caution if you're sensitive to the plants in this family.
Extract of stinging nettle leaf (not the root, which is used to heal prostate issues) can be effective in reducing a runny nose and post-nasal drip, as can a supplement containing a combination of elderflower, sorrel, cowslip, verbena, and gentian root. Feverfew, ginkgo biloba, ginger, kava kava, and valerian have all been used to help heal headaches. Take a supplement of one of these herbs or use drops in a tincture. You can also make a ginger tea with fresh, thinly sliced root placed in boiling water and sipped.
Healing gemstones can be used as an adjunct to herbal remedies. Aventurine is an excellent stone for healing allergies. It has an anti-inflammatory effect on rashes, migraines and eye inflammation, as well as being effective in treating the lungs, throat and sinuses. A piece of polished amethyst can be held against the forehead to help heal a sinus headache, bringing soothing relief quite rapidly. It also calms the lungs and allergies affecting the respiratory system. Golden obsidian is a great stone for general allergy symptoms, as is clear blue sapphire. Fluorite is great for healing sinusitis.
Please note that if this is the first time you'll be using any of these herbs, it is best to be sure you are not allergic to them before you ingest them. If you are allergic to any similar plants, avoid those within the same family. If you are at all unsure, please consult a physician before using. As always, use common sense when working with herbs. Take nothing internally without being absolutely sure it's edible and safe and use nothing that you feel you may be allergic to. Always consult a physician if you aren't feeling well and remember: I am not a doctor and thus cannot diagnose nor treat any condition. Use caution and feel better soon!
Photo of butterbur plant courtesy of steb1 on flickr.