1. Avoid lipstick, perfume, or anything scented—especially when pollen counts are high. "Any odor is like sandpaper rubbing against an irritated eye," says Murray Grossan, MD, a Los Angeles-based board-certified otolaryngologist who specializes in alternative therapies for sinusitis and allergies.

2. Get plenty of rest, so you can replenish your natural cortisone, the body's own anti-inflammatory.

3. Drink lots of liquids, especially hot green tea. "Liquid stimulates your nasal cilia, and green tea is high in antioxidants, which can help reduce allergy symptoms," Grossan says.

4. Carry a sweater or jacket to avoid a chill because temperature changes can cause allergy flare-ups. Also, don't indulge in iced drinks. "When you have allergies, your body's thermostat is off," Grossan says. "Instead of providing blood to the skin to warm it, the lack of temperature regulation causes you to sneeze and hack." The chilling of your body also slows the cilia, which worsens allergy symptoms.

5. Don't blow your nose too hard, or you may force mucus into healthy sinuses or ear canals.

—M.H.