Fighting Allergies in the Workplace

As Spring begins to come into full bloom, millions of working people all over the country start to experience a seasonal difficulty that men, women, and children dread. Allergies, in one form or another, affect 20 million adults and six million children, making up 14% of the population in the United States. Allergies can be debilitating to even the most basic functions of daily life, and at work, the symptoms of seasonal allergies can start to indeed halter tasks and responsibilities. The core issue at hand is not eradicating allergies, but fighting them, especially in a crowded environment like most workplaces.

Why Allergies Flare Up in the Workplace

For those with allergies, the symptoms seem to get worse at work than they are at home. There are a few reasons for this, all that deal with the work environment.

Workplace Exposure

There are several ways that airborne allergies can spread across the workplace. For one, particles and dust spread via ventilation systems that, if present in the workplace, can spread into the air breathed by employees. When surrounded by a trigger for allergies, the workday can feel unbearable. Sneezing, coughing, and eye irritation are common for many who are exposed to an excess of airborne particles at work. If this is the case, individuals should keep track of allergic symptoms during the work week and compare them to the weekend.

Irritation Brought Into Work

Sometimes, the commute to work can be all it takes to trigger a whole work day of bad allergies. Things like air vents can bring in pollen and other triggers into a vehicle and immediately make the day start on a rough note. Likewise, public transportation, biking, and walking to work also increases the chance of airborne particles that may trigger a reaction that lasts the work day.

Fighting Allergy Issues While at Work

There are a few simple ways to make allergic reactions less detrimental, no matter where they are occurring.

HEPA Filters and Clothing Materials

Air filters that remove airborne particles are available in both tall, office models, and desktop models. A small HEPA filter can help to make sure air in the work environment is as clean and transparent as possible. Likewise, clothing can grab onto pollen and other particles. Cotton is less absorbent, as is wool, but polyester can be known to carry all the particles from the outdoors everywhere an individual travels. Implementing these changes can make a big difference.