HOUSTON – Kelsey Nowacki said for years her allergy and sinus symptoms were unbearable.
“Can't breathe, you know eyes itchy, watery, it was a mess!” she said.
Nowacki said she has allergies to dust, animals, feathers and pollen. That made the Houston Rodeo and many other life events difficult to enjoy.
“Going outside or doing anything was really miserable. The rodeo was just pretty impossible,” she said.
Physician assistant with the American Sinus Institute, Jason Williams, said most people can find relief with drugstore medications.
“Like Allegra, Claritin, Zyrtec, they have Flonase and nasal steroids over-the-counter now and those do real well for treating symptoms and preventing symptoms,” Williams said. “So, if a person knows they're going to be there for a good while they can take these in advance, that way they can decrease the symptoms that they might usually have.”
When that didn't work for Nowacki, she opted for balloon sinuplasty to open her nasal passages. It's a procedure done in office that she said significantly improved her symptoms so she can better manage her allergies with over-the-counter medicines and shots.
The procedure helped open up her world to experiences like the Houston Rodeo.
“I plan on going to see The Chainsmokers, I’ve never seen them in concert and definitely Chris Stapleton. I've heard his show is sold out so I can't wait!” Nowacki said.
If you are an allergy sufferer and heading to the Rodeo, the American Sinus Institute said rinsing with a Neti pot when you get home will rinse the dust and pollen out of your nose so you can prevent an allergy attack.
If you suffer allergy attacks for days or weeks, a doctor can prescribe a decongestant or give a steroid shot. If that does not work, you can ask if you're a candidate for sinus surgery.