How Do I Survive With Allergies?
You see this guy? He is one of four horses that we own. We have owned horses since May 2016 and we have been exposed to horses since May 2015. This still sounds very strange to me! My whole entire life I spent deathly allergic to horses – ER visits, epipens, doctors and all. It was seriously that bad! Never in a million years had I imagined I would get near horses much less own and ride them. To be fair I don’t ride them much – I mostly just love having them and spending time with them.
My handsome boy in the first photo is Thor and he is pure belgian and the second photo is Ace who is a cross between belgian and appaloosa. We first became interested in horses through a simple introduction for my daughter while on vacation in Florida in 2015. At that point I felt I was tempting fate just to tag along to take pictures – I made no attempt to touch any animal while there but was thrilled when I didn’t get sick. When we returned home to CT I figured I would find a way to try and get my daughter lessons.
My allergies to horses were so bad I was never able to attend agricultural fairs safely and I couldn’t even get allergy shots. No one would do them because they said I was far too allergic. But now I was determined. So my first tip is to expose yourself incrementally over a long period of time. For months I couldn’t even be in the barn with the horses while my daughter tacked up. Every week I stayed in the barn a few minutes longer; then I started just touching a horse with my finger (truly just one finger); then my hand; then I would brush a horse a little; then I would help tack them up etc… Literally this incremental exposure took a year. Now I can spend full days at the barn without a problem. I can spend hours brushing a horse or horses without a problem. The caveat to that is that this is successful just at our barn. When I try to go to a barn farther north such as in Maine – I get sick sick sick every time. I have to assume it has something to do with the different hay they are eating or something. I would try to get lessons for my daughter when we were in Maine during the summer but I stopped because I kept getting sick.
Toni is the first horse we bought and she is my daughter’s horse. Once we bought her my allergies were really tested because now we were cleaning stalls, feeding, watering, changing bedding and most of all – dealing with the hay.
Essential Oils are definitely an asset with allergies. I utilize essential oils topically for things like hay rash, poison ivy, etc… Different oils are helpful when I have respiratory issues from allergies or my asthma – clears me up quickly. I often use a diffuser with essential oils to give an added boost of immunity. Some essential oils that are especially helpful for allergies are: Lemon, Lavender, Peppermint, Eucalyptus and Tea Tree Oil.
This fourth horse was a recent addition to our clan. I don’t expect to keep her but she was slaughter bound and I just couldn’t let her go. So we rescued her, are working to rehab her, update her training and find her a forever home – hopefully a show home because she has a tremendous love for jumping!
Moringa! I drink a Moringa based beverage at least once a day but sometimes twice. Moringa is the most nutrient dense plant on earth and not only do I not have issues with my allergies since I have been drinking it but I also haven’t been sick with even a cold in more than a year. As an added bonus the Moringa helps my hair grow at an incredible pace – so fast I can’t keep up with cutting it. I just cut 8 inches off and it is barely noticeable!
Diet! I am not referring to weight loss although that is great too. Rather I am referring to nutrition and including foods in my diet that naturally help with allergies such as raw local honey, hot and spicy foods, bone broth, probiotic rich foods, pineapple, apple cider vinegar, organic vegetables and clean proteins.
Get plenty of fresh air, exercise and get both by doing something you love – hiking, horseback riding, biking, or even just hanging out on a beach or sitting on top of a mountain. Life is too short to be cooped up in a house! Be happy and active.
When all these tips fail – seek medical attention. There are so many ways to calm down allergic reactions there really is no reason to suffer. Enjoy life and all it has to offer without feeling sick!