Sunday, July 30, 2006

Alas! It's grass!

For the better part of the past two days, I’ve been in a Benadryl-induced stupor, necessitated by an allergy to one of the best-smelling things in the world: fresh-cut grass. To my knowledge, I never had allergies in my life until I was 42. One night that year I went to bed with a light case of the sniffles, and the next morning I woke up in a world of spinning rooms. For the next three days, if I ventured out of bed at all, I lurched like a stumbling drunk.

At the time I had no idea what caused it. My grandmother, Lola (a/k/a Mammaw), used to have “dizzy spells” occasionally and had been told by her doctor that it was an inner-ear condition. I assumed that must be my problem, too, and in a way it was. At the time, I was too sick to go to the doctor for a diagnosis. Mammaw lived to the age of 92 despite her occasional dizziness, so I decided just to stay in bed and wait it out.

My boyfriend back then (the magician), suggested that my dizziness might be allergy related, but I pooh-poohed that idea immediately. Allergies were his affliction, not mine. Then, a few days after I was on my feet again, I picked up a magazine and discovered an article about allergic reactions. One of them, to my surprise, was dizziness. The article described symptoms just like those I’d experienced, and it suggested antihistamines for relief.

Next time--and there have been many next times, more in the spring and fall--I was prepared. I’ve learned through experience that I can prevent full-blown vertigo by taking Benadryl at the first sign of symptoms. If I don't pay attention to the least little bit of drippiness in my nose, that drippy fluid will build up inside my ear canals in a matter of hours and I'll become one sick drunk.

You'll be glad to know I’ve just deleted an additional half page full of boring, allergy-related stuff. Let’s just sum it up by saying I walked outside on Friday while my daughter was cutting my grass–-even though I knew I shouldn’t be out there–-and inhaled a snootful of airborne grass pollen. The histamines my body produced in response to that particular dose of pollen have put up a mighty battle, so I’ve taken more Benadryl than usual. And all I’ve wanted to do this weekend is sleep.

Now that you’ve read all the boring, allergy-related stuff I didn’t delete, I’m sure you could use a little nap yourself. Sweet dreams.


  1. I think I've developed an allergy to grass, period. If I kneel on it, any skin that's been in contact with it feels like it's on fire and itches. So far I've managed to avoid the nasal stuff by taking an antihistamine before I cut the grass. There are pills that don't make you drowsy, you know-including prescription stuff, like Allegra, which works wonders but is a little expensive for me.

  2. Sorry to hear you have such a bad reaction Velvet especially to something so prolific. Hope you are 100% again soon.

    Strange things allergies. Why is it that some of us are more susceptible than others, and to such a wide variety of things?
    My own allergy was to sulphur or rather sulphonomide, my body blew up to almost Michelin Man proportions.

  3. some times enter ear infection does make you dizzy ,also high blood pressure. i have allergy and allergy med is a way of life for me and they also make my blood pressure higher. glad to know you are still with us i was getting worried.

  4. Janet, I actually got a prescription for Allegra. It didn't make me sleepy, but it didn't act as quickly as the Benadryl, either. Considering the cost, I switched back to my old standby.

    Sandy, the grass doesn't seem to bother me unless I get down close to it or breathe in airborne particles when it's just been cut. I've also learned (the hard way) not to nuzzle Butch and Kadi on the same day the grass is cut.

    Patsy, I'm right there with you on the allergies AND the high blood pressure, so I do keep an eye on the BP.

    Thanks for your concern, everybody, but I'm lazy by nature. It doesn't take much to make me want to go to sleep.

  5. I recommend Claritin. No prescription needed and it doesn't make you drowsy. Plus they have generic brands now.

  6. Allergies didn't bother me either until I was in my 40's. I've tried practically everything. And it all worked - for a little while. My latest - NasaCort - it's a prescription - has worked well for more than 6 mos. That's a record for me. Hope you feel better soon, VS.

  7. Thanks for the recommendations, Mike and Sassy. It'll be time for a check-up soon, so I'll see what the doctor thinks about these two meds.

    I'm feeling much better today, thank you, and keeping my butt indoors.

  8. Gee, that might be my problem. I have been dizzy, nose runny in the mornings and sneezes. I never thought about allergies. BTW I enjoy your blog. You are a "keep my attention" blogger. Wanted to let ya know. Take care, keep up the good work.
    God Bless!

  9. Moobar, thanks for visiting. Sounds like you have the same symptoms I do.


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