Winters might be your favorite season and you love to stay warm by carrying stylish woolens while some people can be allergic to them. It is a common condition, and individuals witness skin irritation, redness, and itching after wearing woolen outfits. It is tricky to distinguish whether you have a wool allergy or are just sensitive to it. In this article, we will learn everything about wool allergy, including ways to prevent woolen clothes allergy.
Concept of Wool Allergy: An Ayurvedic Perspective
Ayurveda is an age-old science of longevity and has a strong foundation in the form of a wide range of concepts. Ayurveda stresses the idea of asatmaya or incompatibility, which says that there are certain foods and things that are incompatible with the body, and in response, the body starts an allergic response. The incompatibility occurs due to imbalances in the doshas, which are triggered by factors like low digestive fire that result in the formation of Ama ras or toxins. Therefore, to keep the doshas in a state of equilibrium, it is best advised to understand the unique body constitution and current state of the doshas imbalance so that interventions can be implemented. Ayurvedic management involves herbal remedies, detoxification therapies, and diet and lifestyle modification.
Symptoms of Wool Allergy
Individuals who have sensitivity towards wool become itchy as soon as their skin comes in contact with the fabric. Some of the common symptoms of wool allergy are:
- Itching and rashes or hives
- Inflamed skin
- Dryness or scales
- Irritation in the eyes, runny nose, and cough can also occur
Diagnosis of Wool Allergy
People who are already suffering from some allergy or asthma are at an increased risk of getting wool allergy. You can test whether you are allergic or not by wearing the same woolen clothes but wearing a thick layer of clothes between your skin and wool. If no symptoms appear, then most likely you are not allergic to wool, and you have more sensitive skin.
Causes of Wool Allergy
The reason behind wool allergy is lanolin, which is a protective waxy layer that is present in sheep’s hair. The immune system recognizes lanolin as a foreign substance and initiates an allergic reaction against it.
Also Read:- What is Wool Allergy and How to Treat It?
Natural Ways to Prevent Woolen Clothes Allergy
You can consider the following tips to prevent woolen clothes allergy:
1. Pick Alternative Fabrics
Pick garments that are made from other fabrics that have a lesser probability of initiating an allergic reaction, such as cotton, or linen.
2. Add A Barrier
If the weather outside is cold and you prefer to stay warm with woolen clothes, then you can add a barrier or a layer of cotton clothes between your skin and woolen garments so that the allergen fabric does not directly come in contact with the skin.
3. Pick Hypoallergenic Wool
Some clothing lines have hypoallergenic woolen products that undergo processing to remove the potential allergen. Pick clothes that have a label as hypoallergenic so that you can prevent severe skin symptoms like redness, itching, or hives.
4. Wash New Woolens Before Wearing Them
One of the practical tips is to wash the clothes before wearing them to remove harmful allergens and any residual chemicals that are responsible for skin irritation and itching.
5. Pick Detergents Carefully
You should pick chemical-free detergents that do not have any fragrance so as to reduce the chances of skin allergy.
6. Moisturize Your Skin
You can keep your skin adequately moisturized to avoid dryness and limit the risk of skin irritation. It is better to use a moisturizer made with natural products.
Ayurvedic Management of Wool Allergy
Ayurveda stresses the adoption of a holistic approach to address doshas imbalance in the body and also strengthen the body’s immunity to fight against allergens. The following measures can help you deal with wool allergy in alliance with Ayurvedic concepts and beliefs.
1. Aim for A Pitta-Balancing Diet.
According to Ayurveda, wool allergy is linked with the aggravation of fire elements or pitta dosha. You should include pitta-balancing food items such as cucumber, mint, coriander, and coconut. Furthermore, the intake of food items that are too hot, spicy, sour, and inflammatory should be discontinued.
2. Include Herbal Remedies
You must include some common herbs that are anti-allergic and anti-inflammatory. Also, these herbs have immune-modulating properties, such as aloe vera, which has cooling and soothing qualities. Additional addition of spices like turmeric, manjistha, and neem are recommended as they maintain skin health and also help in detoxification.
3. Lifestyle Modification
You must follow a healthy daily regime and seasonal regime as guided by Ayurvedic texts. An essential part of the daily regime includes abhyanga or self-massage with cooling oils such as coconut oil or sunflower oil for skin nourishment.
Additionally, it is best recommended to stay away from lifestyle factors that help in aggravation of pitta, like exposure to excessive heat or eating hot and spicy food items. One should follow diet recommendations based on individual body constitution.
4. Detoxification (Panchkarma)
You should consult an Ayurvedic physician for detoxification therapies like panchakarma to remove toxins from the body and balance doshas.
Wool allergy is a type of allergy that initiates an allergic reaction in the form of redness, itching, hives, or rashes when skin is exposed to woolen clothes. In this article, we have discussed different measures to prevent woolen clothes allergy, like adding layers of cotton fabric between the skin and wool items to avoid the symptoms. The condition can also be successfully managed with the implementation of Ayurvedic herbal remedies, diet, and lifestyle modifications.
If you are stressed as your loved one is suffering from Woolen clothes allergy or any allergy, then you can contact our diligent team of doctors headed by Dr Sahil Gupta. IAFA is one of the most trustworthy and committed institutions to making the world a better place through its original and holistic approach. Dr. Gupta’s team provides effective treatment for all types of allergies and respiratory infections using 100% natural and herbal products.
Zallmann, M., Smith, P., Tang, M., Spelman, L., Cahill, J., Wortmann, G., Katelaris, C., Allen, K., & Su, J. (2017). Debunking the Myth of Wool Allergy: Reviewing the Evidence for Immune and Non-immune Cutaneous Reactions. Acta Dermato Venereologica, 97(8), 906–915. https://doi.org/10.2340/00015555-2655