Last Updated on 04/16/2013 by Chris Gampat
You remember that kid who was allergic to everything growing up? For the most part that was me, and phases of those allergies come and go with my immune system. Being a creative and journalist over the years, I’ve had to do shoots where I ended up with red eyes from pollen or totally sick for the next couple of days. And as a photographer, we all know that time is money and that any time lost needs to be recounted for with you working twice as hard after your recovery.
If you’re an allergy prone photographer, though, there are a couple of things you should keep in mind whether you’re hankering for capturing that perfect landscape, or the newly engaged want you to photograph them amongst some beautiful cherry blossoms.
Your Locations Are What Really Matter
The location that you’re shooting in needs to be kept very closely in mind during an allergy season. Newer studios and more affordable ones, for example, can sometimes barely sweep to take care of dust–this typically happens in lofts. And when you’re working in that location for a while, the debris floating around can build up to a point where it triggers the sniffles. Be very vigilant with this type of stuff.
And then there is the issue of being outside. It doesn’t hurt to check not only the weather but the pollen and dander count for the day to see just what’s floating around for that day. It can sometimes be extremely dangerous for you. The typical example is when you need to photograph a couple amongst cherry blossoms. While they can be beautiful, they can also be deadly to you.
The solutions: Claratin, Allegra or Zyrtek. Mucinex works wonders as well. Take them well before you even go to the shoot to ensure that they’re in your system and combating anything that may tamper with your functionality.
Gargling With Tea
At the time of writing this post, I have recently gotten rid of a cold resulting from an allergy. To help expel this ailment, I often mixed various Yogi teas together and drank them many times a day. My body is weird and sometimes I need to try different things to get rid of a sickness.
One day I thought about gargling with salt water but had my tea cup in hand–and that’s when a crazy idea came about. It turns out that tea is not only great for boosting your mind when you’re editing, but gargling with tea is excellent at getting rid of all the bad stuff in your throat too. It also helps prevent the cold from coming back.
So overall–stock up on tea. Drink it when you’re editing, and gargle it when you need to. But don’t overdo it–tea can actually give you symptoms exhibiting a drunken state due to the fact that it is a blood thinner.
Carry Eye Drops In Your Camera Bags
Taking care of your eyes is a big deal when you’re a photographer, but it is an even bigger deal when you wear glasses. Let’s think about this: a photographer that needs to use glasses all the time will need to take extra good care of their vision to ensure that they can do their work. And if you mix being allergy prone into the situation, you’ll have even more potential problems.
Visine or other drops should work very well when you’re out on a shoot and allergy problems happen. But what many people don’t know is that there is a process to ensuring that the problem doesn’t persist too much. What’s worked for me is heading into a bathroom, washing my hands thoroughly, running cold water into my hands and dipping my eyes into to rinse them off and then putting in eye drops. It’s even more important then to not rub your eyes.
Then try to do this eye exercise:
– Lay back on a pillow (if you can)
– Close your eyes and ensure that your glasses are off.
– Roll you eyes up and hold that for three seconds.
– Now relax them and let them go back to the normal position for three seconds.
– Roll your eyes down for three seconds. Then to the right for three seconds and to the left for three seconds.
– Relax them again for 5 seconds.
– Roll your eyes up and then roll them to the right. Return them to the normal position.
– Roll your eyes up and then to the left. Return them to the normal position.
Repeat the process.
This usually works for me, and I encourage you to try it the next time that you’re on a shoot. Ensure that you carry it in your bag. Take a look at our roundup of better ways to take care of your eyes.
Emergen-C and Alka Seltzer Severe Cold and Flu
This one is a bit more simple but has to do with totally nuking the cold: Emergen-C and Alka Selter Severe Cold and Flu. I got this bit of advice from News Editor Peter Walkowiak and Features Editor Abram Goglanian–and I couldn’t be more thankful.
This helped to totally eliminate the cold, but during that time there were moments when I was totally down and out. But there was still much to do. And for that, we recommend you check out what you can do when you’re sick and under the weather.
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