Beating Back the Allergies

The Allergies

As I have aged, my allergies have become worse and worse. I’ve had them since childhood. It’s a genetic thing. My father would sneeze about 20 sneezes in a row for no reason. His mother did the same thing. I, however, took the sneezing ritual to a whole new level of “simplified sophistication.”

About 8 years ago I began sneezing all twenty sneezes in one enormously long sneeze that only stops because my entire body is emptied of air. I then have just enough time to catch a big breath and sneeze the most powerful, the loudest sneeze heard on earth. The concluding sneeze stops time. I think the earth pauses in its orbital path for just a second from the tremendous blast my sneeze produces. This bizarre sneezing ritual is actually tiring and exceptionally loud. I feel that my heart may stop or that I might simply implode as all of the air leaves my body. It’s crazy violent.

The Smoke

Back when the California fires raged on killing people and destroying homes and vast swaths of land1 I had to buy an air purifier to get the smoke smell out of our apartment in San Francisco. We ordered the Coway AP-1512HH Mighty Air Purifier with True HEPA and Eco Mode. It worked exceptionally well. During my three-week stay, my allergies were unbelievably better than usual.

The Air Purifier

The air purifier in San Francisco made such a difference, we now own several of them in San Francisco and Atlanta. I still sneeze, but my grand sneeze seizures have been a thing of the past until today. But, we’re in the height of spring. The pollen count is crazy high, and the high winds are blasting the pollen about.

I use the following strategies to mitigate my allergic reactions during the pollen season:

  1. I stay indoors more, especially in the mornings when the pollen count tends to be at its daily peak.
  2. I run the air purifiers 24/7 on medium or high during the day.
  3. I run the air purifiers on high during the night.
  4. Today I read that you should rinse off just before going bed. Apparently the pollen sticks to your hair. It gets on your pillow at night. Interestingly, I frequently have a horrible allergy reaction when I first lie down. I’ve always thought that curious. Now I potentially understand why.
  5. If things are really out of hand, I will use a Netty Pot to clean out my nasal passages. I hate doing it, but it really seems to work.

Our Air Purifier of Choice

If you are considering purchasing an air purifier, we really like ours. It’s the Coway AP-1512HH Mighty Air Purifier with True HEPA and Eco Mode. You can order it in white or black. It’s much larger than it looks in the photo coming in roughly at 16.8″w x 18.3″h x 9.6″d. Below is information from Amazon’s site:

  • Coway Mighty (AP-1512HH) is designed to accommodate room sizes up to 361 sq.ft (CADR: Dust 246 / Pollen 240 / Smoke 233 cb. ft.).
  • 4 Stage Filtration System (Pre-filter, Deodorization filter, True HEPA filter, Vital Ion) captures and reduces up to 99.97% of particles 0.3 microns in the air, including pollen, pollutants and other allergens. It also reduces volatile organic compounds and reduces odor.
  • Coway Mighty pollution sensor communicates indoor air quality in real-time. The brightly colored LED lets you know how clean or dirty your indoor air is every minute of the day. And it features a timer, and filter lifetime indicator.
  • Fan speeds available in 1, 2, 3 stages by manually setting up. While auto mode automatically optimizes the speed setting 1 through 3 based on the level of indoor air quality. When no pollution is detected for 30 minutes, the fan will automatically stop and set as Eco mode to save energy.
  • Timer feature allows the machine to run 1/4/8 hours before automatically powering off.
  • Filter replacement indicator checks both Pre-filter and HEPA filter respectively to let users be aware of when to wash or replace the filter.
  • 77 W power consumption and quiet operation with noise level ranging from 24.4 dB to 53.8 dB.
  • Limited manufacturer’s warranty covers any internal/functional parts for 1 year and motor and electronic parts for 3 years. Filters are excluded.
  • Won the Best Air Purifier of 2018 at Wirecutter and ranked 1st place at the TopTenReviews.

  1. because the electric company PG&E was apparently negligent and has now been forced into bankruptcy to avoid financial liability for the catastrophe they created