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Could Your Allergies Be Making You Less Safe on the Roads?

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woman with allergies You know your allergies are aggravating, but did you know that they can actually make you less safe on the road? According to one study, suffering from the symptoms of allergies could be as dangerous as driving while under the influence of alcohol. Not only could you be making yourself less safe on the road, but you could be putting other people in danger.

The specifics of the study

The study was done in the Netherlands and it focused on people who had similar symptoms from their allergies: itchy eyes, headaches, and runny noses. They had them drive for an hour and split them into two separate groups. One group used a non-drowsy nasal spray and the others didn’t get any medication. They then tracked how often the drivers veered into the wrong lane, which is a common result of driving under the influence.

The study showed that when a person has allergies and doesn’t take medication, their drive is much worse than someone who did take medication. They likened the driving skills of non-medication individuals with a person who has a blood alcohol level of .03 percent.

It makes sense when you think about it

At first thought, the results of this study may seem surprising but if you’ve had allergies, think about how they make you feel compared to how you feel when you’ve had a few drinks. Allergies can make you foggy, in part because your body releases a chemical known as histamine, which actually causes you to feel tired, sluggish, and generally run down. When you consider that allergies also prevent many people from getting a good night sleep, it’s not hard to see how allergies can have such a huge impact.

What to do if you have allergies

A person who has allergies may read about this study and worry that the only answer is to never again drive when they’re having an allergy flare up. This is not the case. First, look for ways that you can actually reduce your allergies. For example, a ductless air conditioning and heating system could significantly reduce the allergens in your home. For more information, reach out to AC-World today.

Second, take medication if you need it. While allergies can cause reaction times to be lower and can lead to some danger on the road, the study we’re talking about was clear that people who took a simple antihistamine didn’t suffer these problems.