The Allergy and Antihistamine Trigger
Last updated: June 2022
When I had COVID in February 2022, it messed up my well-managed asthma even though I had 3 vaccine shots. Thankfully, I did have those shots and I didn’t get severely ill. However, my asthma got quite finicky and not managed at all.
My respiratory specialist said I need to take antihistamines
I saw a respiratory specialist and I had to triple my asthma medication for 3 weeks. We then went over all asthma triggers that needed to be consistently controlled. And I will be assessed again in a few months. Thankfully, it is back to being well-managed, although I have other lingering COVID-related symptoms.
One of the things we discussed was the necessary need for me to consistently take antihistamine medication. Not as needed, but every single day because my asthma is allergy-triggered. And, of course, I have all sorts of seasonal allergies.
I can't manage my allergies with alternative methods alone
I’ll be the first to admit, that not managing the allergies causes problems. First with asthma, and also with congestion. And those do not actually help with sleep.
In fact, they sort of cause a sleep apnea situation. Disrupted sleep is a restless legs syndrome trigger; I definitely know that one. I can’t manage my allergies with alternative methods alone. I do need antihistamines.
Humidity regulation and saltwater cleanses
I use a humidifier in the drier seasons and a dehumidifier in the humid seasons. My respiratory specialist also suggested saltwater nasal cleanse — which sounds incredibly unpleasant, but I’ll give it a go.
I also use a nasal steroid for chronic congestion, which is a common issue with asthma. And yet, she said it is important to take antihistamines consistently.
Spacing out the antihistamines and my RLS medication
I was avoiding taking the antihistamines every single day because they are an RLS trigger. I liked to take them as early as possible to lessen the chance they would be problematic. If I forgot to take it in that window, I just didn’t. That seemed to work fine.
However, now I definitely have to really take care of my asthma and that isn’t an option. So I have to make sure I take the antihistamine in the morning, spaced as far apart from my RLS medication as humanly possible.
Balancing disrupted sleep patterns and multiple medications
The only issue is that I do get RLS symptoms during the day these days due to erratic sleep. Lingering COVID symptoms have caused some long nap attacks, which makes for weird sleep patterns. I can’t avoid those early attacks. I have just been taking 1 of my RLS pills early when that happens (my dosage is in 4 pills).
I have to be careful about the timing of my medications. Otherwise, restless legs syndrome goes nutty at night. So nutty that sometimes medication isn’t much use at all.
I have to time it perfectly
Since I need both, I have no other option but to take both medications and just perfectly time it. But there is an overlap when my RLS puts on an early show, and then I have to take medication early, leaving me with less to get through the night.
I can’t really see any other way to balance these 2, though — not when I can’t seem to find anything else that works for RLS.
Do you struggle to manage your RLS symptoms while taking multiple medications? What other conditions, including allergies, are difficult to balance in tandem with RLS? Share with us in the comments below.
What do you wish for the most when it comes to RLS awareness?