I’m no stranger to allergies. Ask anyone who occupies an office near mine. They endure my sneezing. Therefore, when I developed a sore throat on Wednesday, I knew it was from sinus drainage. The problem is, sometimes those acute allergy/sinus episodes can morph into full-blown sinus infections.
This morning I awoke with the above mentioned sore throat, sore and swollen neck glands, pain around my left eye socket and pain in a tooth. I’ve had enough of these to know…it’s time to be treated. I had a work event to attend (which went great, by the way), and as soon as my colleagues and I were finished with that I headed to a CVS Drug Store’s Minute Clinic.
I’ve never been to one of these clinics-inside-of-a-drugstore, but the thought of waiting until Monday to see my primary care doc was excruciating. The nurse practitioner who saw me today was really informative. She asked me how much time I spend outside. I told her about my lifestyle (running, yard work, gardening) and she explained that someone who is allergy-prone and outside as much as I am is going to deal with these issues repeatedly. I told her my doc had given me a prescription for an antihistamine, but I won’t take it. It turns me into a zombie and I can’t wake up in the mornings. The feeling mirrors depression and I just won’t go there. The NP shared that antihistamines give her the same reaction. She gave me a prescription for an antihistamine nasal spray. She uses one and doesn’t experience the negative side effect. I’ll try it.
I also left the clinic with an antibiotic and a decongestant. I’m to take Aleve for the sore throat pain. Tonight I may actually sleep through the night pain-free. I’ve been waking up several times a night since Wednesday.
But here’s the good news. The NP told me I can reduce my allergy symptoms by 70%. How? By using a saline nasal spray after every run or yard work session. Seventy percent? I like that. I’m going to use that spray like there’s no tomorrow.
I hate being sick and I don’t like taking a lot of meds. I’m taking four items for this infection. But things happen for a reason. I believe I was supposed to meet this NP and receive a safe, natural remedy for a sinus and allergy problem that’s plagued me for years. Perhaps today’s painful awfulness was an investment in many wonderful tomorrows enjoying the great outdoors. I sure hope so!