Monthly Archives: September 2017

Breathing Easy: Tips for Autumn Allergy Relief

According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, more than 40 million Americans suffer from autumn allergies, making it one of the worst times of the year for those of us who deal with seasonal allergies. The biggest villain is ragweed, a plant that covers the southeast part of the country. Another is pollen, which is sent into the air as the weather cools and foliage changes. These allergens can cause itchy eyes, runny noses, excessive sneezing, wheezing, headaches, nausea, hives, and dry skin. Symptoms that really affect your quality of life!

However, there are a few tricks to manage even the most severe of allergies. Try these out and enjoy autumn instead of sneezing your way through it.

  1. Find out exactly what you’re allergic to. An allergist can run a quick skin-prick text to figure this out. Once you identify the culprit, customize your treatment to what will work best to fight your specific allergy.
  2. Buy a dehumidifier. Not only can this help with breathing, but it can also help if you are sensitive to mold or dust, allergens that flourish in humid environments.
  3. Check pollen levels. If pollen is really aggravating you, you can check pollen levels in your area at Pollen.com. If you’re in a high pollen zone, try to avoid spending a lot of time outdoors.
  4. Take an antihistamine. This is one of the easiest steps you can take, and most over-the-counter allergy drugs now are non-drowsy!
  5. Shower. Washing your body and clothes right after spending time outside will prevent pollen from following you around inside and transferring to your furniture.

If these don’t help a bit and your allergies seem to be getting worse, don’t hesitate to visit a doctor to make sure something else isn’t amiss in your immune system! No one wants to spend their autumn sneezing.

Save the Date: Brooklyn Tech’s 95th Anniversary

Brooklyn Tech Alumni Foundation will celebrate the “Titans of Tech” Award and the 95th Anniversary of Brooklyn Tech High School on November 28th in New York City.  As a proud graduate of “Tech” and member of the Alumni Foundation’s Dinner Committee, I urge your support of this outstanding school by attending the reception, placing an advertisement in the Event Journal or contributing any amount you can to the school.

Brooklyn Tech is the country’s premier STEM School (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics). The school’s alumni include inventors, top scientists, CEOs, high-ranking diplomats, scholars in academia, literary figures, Olympians, National Medal recipients and Nobel Laureates.

Tech is committed to preparing students for tomorrow’s cutting edge professions and careers.  The cost to maintain Tech’s level of educational excellence is enormous and involves building and equipping modern science and technology labs for 5,800+ students.  As the rate of change in technology accelerates, so does the cost of delivering such excellence.  New York City provides substantial support, but it is not enough. One of the Alumni Foundation’s goals is to close this monetary gap by relying on contributions raised from this annual dinner.

As a graduate of Brooklyn Tech, I cannot begin to describe the impact the school has had on my education, career trajectory and personal growth. Brooklyn Tech afforded me an outstanding education and laid a solid foundation for me for years to come. I attribute a good part of my success to Brooklyn Tech.  Supporting Brooklyn Tech is a commitment I have made in order to give back and provide an opportunity for others to benefit as well.

I am reaching out to you to help me fulfill this commitment and support this school in all it does to provide opportunities for other young people.

All the “Titans of Tech” Committee members are proud graduates of the school and happen to be connected through the worlds of architecture, human resources, health care, law, actuarial science and finance.   We are united in the mission to preserve Tech’s excellence–  it will surely be a positive factor in educating tomorrow’s leaders.

Please support. Many thanks.

Penelope Kokkinides ‘87
Brooklyn Tech Alumni Board Member
Journal Co-Chair

Staying Safe Post-Hurricane

For the last several weeks, we’ve all watched destruction unfold as hurricane after hurricane has ravaged Texas, Louisiana, Florida, Puerto Rico and other locations in the Atlantic and Caribbean.

Harvey arrived on August 25, pummeling the Texas coast with high winds and over 50 inches of rain and displacing tens of thousands of residents. Quickly after came Irma, flying through the Caribbean and Puerto Rico on September 6 before hitting Florida, where it left 15 million people without power. News outlets are full of advice on how to stay safe during a hurricane, but what about after the storm has passed? Here are some tips on how to stay safe once the hurricane has passed.

  1. Beware of debris. One of the first things we want to do after a huge storm is get out and assess the damage. But after such high winds and extensive rain, streets are often strewn with hazards. Make sure to be extremely careful outside and extra wary of downed power lines, fallen trees, broken glass, and treacherous chunks of buildings and commercial signs.
  2. Do NOT drive through standing water. This means in parking lots, roads and bridges. It may be hard to believe, but a car can get carried away in as little as a foot of water! Additionally, deep water can stall your engine and leave you stranded.
  3. NEVER use a generator inside your home, even with the doors and windows open. Carbon monoxide is one of the biggest killers after a storm!
  4. Watch out for wild animals. Snakes, rodents, insects, wasps—these animals might be seeking higher ground after the storm and they can be dangerous.
  5. Don’t drink your water. Flooding can bring waterborne bacterial infections. Treat all water as if it’s infected until you can get an inspection.

Stay safe out there! Turn on your radio so that you can listen for emergency bulletins and updates with the latest storm information.

How to Kick that Summer Cold

 There are few things more frustrating than being bed-bound due to the fatigue, hacking and throbbing that accompany a cold, when all you want is to be out enjoying the summer sun. To make matters worse, it’s proven that summer colds tend to last longer than the ones you catch in the winter, and they have a higher chance of recurring.

Although there isn’t a certifiable cure for the common cold, these tried-and-true tips should have you feeling better in no time:

Up Your Vitamin C

Vitamin C isn’t proven to actually prevent colds, but it has been shown to boost your immunity and potentially shorten the longevity of your cold. If you’re not big into taking supplements, try incorporating these foods into your diet that are loaded with vitamin C.

Get Plenty of Rest

We all know that summer is the time of endless outdoor activities with friends whether it’s a backyard get-together, a meet-up at the trendiest rooftop bar for happy hour or even a walk in your local park. FOMO (fear of missing out) is a real thing, but in the long run, you’re better off skipping out on plans with friends to get better. Overexerting yourself is only going to ultimately prolong your sniffly condition. Try to get as much rest as possible to bolster your immune system.

Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate

All of the sneezing and blowing your nose that comes as a result of a cold can lead to dehydration, so it’s important to counteract that by continually drinking water. Besides the obvious need of fueling your body with water to keep hydrated, consistently downing fluids will help to keep your throat and nasal passages open and lubricated. Hot liquids especially, like tea or broth, relieve nasal congestion and can soothe inflamed tissue that lines your passages.

As always, consult your doctor if your symptoms or conditions worsen or continue to persist longer than two weeks. Feel free to leave a comment in the section below to let me know if you have any remedies for treating a summer cold.