Is just one breath of smoke enough to ruin your day? As soon as the person next to you lights up, the first thing to cross your mind is the unpleasant memory of your last clash with secondhand smoke and the runny nose, sneezing, and congestion that followed. For some, the reaction to cigarette smoke closely resembles an allergic reaction, which leads them to believe that they have “smoke allergies”.
There are a lot of “smoke allergy” myths that actually make it harder to properly treat your condition. This article will help you tell if determine whether you are affected by “smoke allergies” and what you can do to better protect yourself from the illnesses associated with smoke exposure.
#1 Myth: “Allergic to Smoke”
No one is really allergic to smoke. A large number of people insist that they are allergic to smoke created by cigarettes or cigars, but the truth is that they have having an allergy-like reaction due to other health conditions. Understanding exactly why you feel like you are having allergy attack when around a smoker is the key to understanding how to prevent future symptoms.
Why do I say that there is no such thing as a smoke allergy? Because technically smoke is not an allergen – but it is an irritant. This little difference explains why most people feel no relief when they take antihistamine allergy medicine after exposure to smoke. The key to avoiding the problems caused by cigarette smoke is determining what type of sensitivity you have and how best to treat it.
Who is Prone to “Smoke Allergies”?
Sometimes people who are sensitive to tobacco smoke will also experience allergy-like symptoms when they encounter strong odors, perfumes, weather changes or temperature changes.
Symptoms of Cigarette Sensitivity
For some people, exposure to tobacco smoke can cause a list of symptoms:
These symptoms appear shortly after exposure to cigarette smoke and last for hours afterward. In addition to these symptoms, people who are in smoky environments on a daily basis are more likely to experience constant respiratory infections like sinusitis and bronchitis as well as the development of wheezing and asthma.
Tobacco Smoke Exposure
A lit cigarette is capable of releasing over 4,000 different chemicals into the air (80 of these are known or suspected carcinogens). Sometimes avoiding situations where people are smoking is almost impossible. Often a family member will smoke indoors, or a public place like a bar or restaurant will allow smoking. Depending on the severity of your reaction, just the smell of smoke on someone’s clothing or in a room where someone had smoked can cause irritation. So, even though avoidance of tobacco smoke is the best method to prevent “smoke allergies”, it may not be a practical solution.
Anyone that participates in athletic activities knows that there are some items you need to have in your athletic bag. Regardless of what age you are, a muscle sprain, strain or contusion can happen. There’s nothing worse than having a muscle injury in a tightly contested game or match. Unfortunately it will happen and you have to be prepared. When you are competing you never know what or when some nagging injury will occur. The important thing is that you have it when you need it. Almost none of the competitors I know desire to quit unless the injury is severe I’m sure you’ll agree the following 5 kinds of products really are essential for any serious athlete:
I. Before Competition:
My personal favorite pre-sports treatment for muscle aches and pain (especially lower back pain) is a product called ThermoDerm. Most will recall the “atomic balm” most trainers utilized to treat deep muscle injuries. It was a thick, gooey substance that stunk up the locker room and anything it touched. The good thing about “atomic balm” was that it lasted a long time. The advantage of ThermoDerm is that is simple to apply and is a deep penetrating lotion that warms the muscles for a long period of time. Most typical “drug store” products I’ve tried work for less than an hour. Thermoderm still works after 2 hours. It has very little scent and washes off easily. Thermoderm is very useful for me and I highly recommend it.
II.After a Muscle or Joint Injury:
The muscle pain reliever I’ve used most after a muscle injury occurs is the popular product BioFreeze. I apply BioFreeze on the injured area and wrap it (if at all possible) with an elastic wrap to compress the injured muscle tissue. BioFreeze is also quite effective for the treatment of joint pain, tendinitis, bursitis and arthritis. The cooling effect of BioFreeze helps relieve the pain so you can finish your sporting event. Biofreeze also has very little odor and is also simple to wash off. Biofreeze is available in several different easy to apply containers. Another product I use for minor joint pain is Mueller coolant spray. It provides an immediate cooling effect to ease soreness. The benefit to this product is the fact that it works immediately and easily sprays on the injured area. The disadvantage is that it won’t last long or penetrate as deep as BioFreeze. I use the Mueller coolant spray primarily for golf and always carry it inside my golf bag.
III. Tape and Wraps:
The product I’ve used quite often for different applications has been the great old ace bandage that you can get at any drug store. I like the 4 inch width the best because it can cover more area with less sliding around like smaller size do. The newer versions use Velcro at the end of the wrap so you don’t have to use those old pointy clips that scratch your skin.
The newest product is …
Alternative medicine is kind of an umbrella title for a number of different health or healing philosophies and approaches to medicine, health and healing. Included in alternative medicine are homeopathy, naturopathy, chiropractic care, acupuncture, and natural remedies.
Many diseases and health conditions (i.e., emphysema, COPD, arthritis, cancer) have actually been beaten by alternative medicine and natural remedies. However, mainstream medicine has for years tended to not acknowledge these countless successes, apparently because they go against its established philosophies, methodologies, and are generally far less profitable than their mainstream treatments.
From our research and that of many highly qualified sources, many safe and effective alternative treatments and remedies have been ignored or even scoffed at for years by mainstream medical authorities and professionals. Mainstream medicine has called some alternative treatments as “unsafe,” “unproven”, etc. However, consider how many once “approved” mainstream pharmaceutical drugs, prescribed to millions of patients, have been recalled due to harm or death to patients? Consider the numerous potential side effects they list in their ads for their drugs still on the market. (Talk about “unsafe”! Yet, they can label alternative medicine and natural remedies “unsafe”?!)
Alternative medical, health and healing “testimonials” have also often been called “anecdotes” or “anecdotal evidence;” sometimes, as in a court room, such can be called “hearsay.” Some anecdotal evidence does not qualify as scientific evidence because its nature prevents it from being investigated using the scientific method. We’re not discounting the scientific method at all; it certainly has its place, and it is one of the single greatest strategies and reasons for humanity’s greatest advances in science, technology and medicine in the last two centuries.
There is truly “hearsay” and there is “anecdotal evidence.” Applying these labels too broadly, however, can shade or hide the reality of truly valuable and valid research and results. This terminology or labeling can be accurate (i.e., illogical conclusions), desirable and necessary in many situations. “Goat yogurt mixed with bananas and peanuts prolongs life. I heard of a man who ate this almost every day of his life, and he lived to be 112.” This would be a simplistic example of hearsay or anecdotal evidence; the conclusion is unreliable and does not follow the evidence. Such cases may hold some truth, but, by their nature, using the scientific method is not possible.
However, with many successful alternative treatments and natural remedies, we are suggesting that there is often a much higher level of correlation linking them to health or healing, even though the scientific method may not be applicable. (Mainstream medical authorities have in the past tended to discount claims or research that wasn’t conducted with the scientific methodology). (Many celebrities, professional athletes, politicians, and other wealthy people are seekers and strong supporters of alternative medicine, natural remedies, etc. Such high performance people need, want and demand high performance supplements, practices and treatments for their minds and bodies. Why shouldn’t you and your family have the same? )
Objectivity is foundational to the scientific method; however, …