ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Keep Asthma, Allergies at Bay for the Holidays
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ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
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ANIMAL CARE
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BONES & JOINTS
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CANCER
Many Cancer Survivors Don't Adopt Healthy Lifestyle
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CAREGIVING
Caregiving May Lengthen Life
U.S. Mental Health Spending Rises, But Many Still Left Out
Preventing Shaken Baby Syndrome
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Vitamins Do Older Women Little Good
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COSMETIC
Wrinkle Fillers Need Better Label Warnings: FDA Panel
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DENTAL, ORAL
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Acid Drinks Blamed for Increase in Tooth Erosion
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DIABETES
Americans Consuming More Sugary Beverages
Whole Grains Take a Bite Out of Type 2 Diabetes Risk
Strict Blood Sugar Lowering Won't Ease Diabetes Heart Risk
DIET, NUTRITION
Compound in Berries May Lessen Sun Damage
Probiotics Are The Good Guys
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DISABILITIES
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ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
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Topical Drugs May Pollute Waterways
Air Pollution Exposure May Slow Fetal Growth
EYE CARE, VISION
Brain Adapts to Age-Related Eye Disease
Certain Diabetes Drugs May Pose Eye Risk
'Blind' Man Navigates Obstacle Course Without Error
FITNESS
You Can Get Great Exercise In The Garden
Study Shows Exercise Shields Against Osteoporosis
Exercise Keeps the Brain Young
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
HRT Use Raises Risk of Stomach Trouble
Japanese Herbals May Ease Gastro Woes
Bowel Prep Harder on Women Than Men
GENERAL HEALTH
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HEAD & NECK
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
Study Suggests Link Between Cell Phones and Brain Tumors
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HEARING
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Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
Brown Rice Tied to Better Heart Health in Study
Implanted Defibrillators Boost Long-Term Survival
Western Diet Linked To Heart Disease, Metabolic Syndrome
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Grapefruit Compound Inhibits Hepatitis C Virus
Swine Flu Now Reported in All 50 States
Hand Washing 10 Times a Day May Help Keep Flu Away
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
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MEN'S HEALTH
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Exercise May Prevent Prostate Cancer: Study Shows
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MENTAL HEALTH
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PAIN
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'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
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PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
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Calcium Supplements Cut Blood Lead Levels During Pregnancy
Yoga's Benefits Outweigh Risks for Pregnant Women
SENIORS
Eating Well And Keeping Active As You Grow Old Will Help You Stay Sharp
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As You Age, Better Health Means Better Sex
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
Sleeping Could Help Women Lose The Baby Fat
Meditation May Help Put Primary Insomnia to Bed
Better Sleep, Grades Seem to Go Up
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Broccoli May Help Battle Breast Cancer
Women Smokers Lose 14.5 Years Off Life Span
Health Tip: Be More Comfortable During Childbirth
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Keep Asthma, Allergies at Bay for the Holidays

HealthDay News) -- They're not Scrooges, but people with allergies and asthma can have bad reactions to certain holiday traditions and need to take special steps to prevent sneezing and wheezing, according to the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI).

Those who are allergic to live evergreens may choose to decorate with artificial plants, but both live and artificial trees can trigger symptoms, experts say. They offer the following hints to help people avoid allergy and asthma symptoms over the holiday season:

* Some allergies are triggered by terpene, which is found in the oil or sap of live evergreen trees, wreaths and garlands. Other allergy sufferers may react to mold or pollen on trees and natural decorations. The ACAAI suggests washing pollen and mold off live trees, especially the trunk, with a garden hose and leaving the tree in a bucket of water in the garage or a covered porch while it dries. Wear gloves when handling the tree to protect against contact with sap.
* For those who are allergic to dust and mold, even artificial trees can be a problem if they haven't been stored properly. Because dust and mold can accumulate on these items, it is a good idea to wash the tree outside before setting it up inside the house for decorating. The best way to store an artificial tree is to place it in an air-tight bag or container.
* Ornaments and other decorations can also gather dust and mold and are best stored in air-tight containers. Thoroughly clean each item before putting it on display.
* Artificial snow spray shouldn't be used indoors because it can trigger asthma and allergy symptoms. Other potential triggers include scented candles, potpourri and other scents, and wood-burning fireplaces, the ACAAI warns.
* Food allergies are another potential problem during the holidays. Those with food allergies should ask party or dinner hosts about the ingredients used in each dish. It is also a good idea to prepare a dish you know is "safe" for you to eat and bring it along to share. When hosting a gathering, talk to guests in advance about food allergies.
* When traveling, remember to pack your asthma and allergy medications. If the trip requires air travel, keep those items in a carry-on bag. Bringing a pillow and mattress cover is recommended for those affected by dust mites.

Stress doesn't cause allergies or asthma but can weaken your immune system. Make sure you take time in your busy holiday schedule to stay on top of your allergy and asthma symptoms so that illness doesn't ruin your holiday plans. People with asthma should talk with their doctor about getting a flu shot, the ACAAI recommends.

SOURCES: American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, news release, Nov. 25, 2009 Published on: December 05, 2009