Fresh Water Allergies--Not in Salt Water

Fresh Water Allergies--Not in Salt Water

Post by ALFRED VOR » Sun, 16 Apr 1995 04:00:00


I started windsurfing on Lake Michigan in the Chicago area and always
ended up feeling like I had hayfever for a week after sailing. A friend
I sailed with had the same and in addition got itchy eyes after
sailing. Going to other fresh water spots resulted in the same
allergies. Wearing a nose plug eliminates the problem.

I have since sailed at many salt water locations and never had this
condition.

I would like to go to Costa Rica's Lake Arnel but because it is fresh
water I hesitate.

Can anyone shed some light on what these allergies are caused from and
why they only occur in fresh water.

Al Vorne

 
 
 

Fresh Water Allergies--Not in Salt Water

Post by Tom von Alt » Mon, 17 Apr 1995 04:00:00

In rec.windsurfing, ALFRED VORNE writes:
: I started windsurfing on Lake Michigan in the Chicago area and always...
                           ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
: Can anyone shed some light on what these allergies are caused from and
: why they only occur in fresh water.

Let's just say there are a LOT of things it might be in that particular
piece of water.  Trying a different fresh water venue might help you
puzzle it out.

former Milwaukeean,
_____________


 
 
 

Fresh Water Allergies--Not in Salt Water

Post by Avery » Mon, 17 Apr 1995 04:00:00

: I started windsurfing on Lake Michigan in the Chicago area and always
: ended up feeling like I had hayfever for a week after sailing. A friend
: I sailed with had the same and in addition got itchy eyes after
: sailing. Going to other fresh water spots resulted in the same
: allergies. Wearing a nose plug eliminates the problem.

: I have since sailed at many salt water locations and never had this
: condition.

: I would like to go to Costa Rica's Lake Arnel but because it is fresh
: water I hesitate.

: Can anyone shed some light on what these allergies are caused from and
: why they only occur in fresh water.

: Al Vorne

I lived in WI for a year and sailed in many lakes.  And I had a similar
problem, as well as everyone I sailed with.  A few hours after sailing
my nose stuffed up and I got a little feverish.  This conditions'
duration seemed to depend on sailing time, particularly the amount of water
that went up my nose.  Sometimes it would last a day sometimes a few days.
Some people suspected a few causes:  Pollen, weed killer(for seaweed),
and farmers pesticides, in the water.  I windsurfed in lake Arenal and
had so much fun I can't remember if I had these symptoms.  The Sun was
the major factor to watch out for down there!  I think I did get a
little stuffed up, but not too bad.  I can sympathize with the guy who
has a long hard day of sailing and goes home just to lay in the hot
summer night with a stuffed nose and pounding head unable to sleep.
It just makes you want to cry :(.  Now that I live and sail in Calif.
the ocean is my haven, I have never gotten sick sailing in salt water.
I think pollen is the most likely candidate for the problem, although
I don't get allergies in the spring and summer from the air???
I suggest you keep your head above the water :)  This could be a good
motive to get those jibes and jumps down pat!
G/L
-Ave

 
 
 

Fresh Water Allergies--Not in Salt Water

Post by Randy Johns » Tue, 18 Apr 1995 04:00:00

I wouldn't be able to windsurf today if it weren't for my daily snorts of
a prescription drug called "Beconase".  I developed lake allergies after
8 years of ramming water up my nose from windsurf crashes.  This has
eliminated my problem which had made sailing next to impossible.  I have
several friends who do get by with nose plugs.  We've also never had
problems with salt water, but now one of our most die-hard sailors has
developed allergies to salt water.
-

 
 
 

Fresh Water Allergies--Not in Salt Water

Post by Booker C. Ben » Tue, 18 Apr 1995 04:00:00


Quote:

>I started windsurfing on Lake Michigan in the Chicago area and always
>ended up feeling like I had hayfever for a week after sailing. A friend
>I sailed with had the same and in addition got itchy eyes after
>sailing. Going to other fresh water spots resulted in the same
>allergies. Wearing a nose plug eliminates the problem.

>I have since sailed at many salt water locations and never had this
>condition.

- Well, I don't know why they occur, but I've gotten similiar symptoms everytime
I've sailed in freshwater from N.H. to Fla, Colorado, California and the gorge.
They more I crash the worse it gets, if I don't crash it's no problem. I think
it has to do with the fact that salt water is much kinder to your mucous
membranes than fresh. My symptoms only last a day or so and are alieviated by
aspirin and decongestant. It's always been worth it. I've gotten in the habit
of taking Alka-seltzer cold as a preventative when sailing on fresh water/high
wind.


 
 
 

Fresh Water Allergies--Not in Salt Water

Post by B. C. We » Tue, 18 Apr 1995 04:00:00


Quote:
>I started windsurfing on Lake Michigan in the Chicago area and always
>ended up feeling like I had hayfever for a week after sailing. A friend
>I sailed with had the same and in addition got itchy eyes after
>sailing. Going to other fresh water spots resulted in the same
>allergies. Wearing a nose plug eliminates the problem.

>I have since sailed at many salt water locations and never had this
>condition.

>I would like to go to Costa Rica's Lake Arnel but because it is fresh
>water I hesitate.

>Can anyone shed some light on what these allergies are caused from and
>why they only occur in fresh water.

>Al Vorne

Two sources:
 1 osmodic shock: salt/ion content of fresh water is lower than
  the cells of your nose, your nose absorbs water and cells
  explode and die, producing inflamation/allergy response.
 2 allergies to fresh water algae.

For both nose plugs or hay fever ***/antihistamines.
On the Hudson I have varying difficulties depending on the tide
(fresh/salt mix.)

but I'm not a real doctor.

 
 
 

Fresh Water Allergies--Not in Salt Water

Post by James Woo » Wed, 19 Apr 1995 04:00:00

Quote:
> I started windsurfing on Lake Michigan in the Chicago area and always
> ended up feeling like I had hayfever for a week after sailing. A friend
> I sailed with had the same and in addition got itchy eyes after
> sailing. Going to other fresh water spots resulted in the same
> allergies. Wearing a nose plug eliminates the problem.

> I have since sailed at many salt water locations and never had this
> condition.

> I would like to go to Costa Rica's Lake Arnel but because it is fresh
> water I hesitate.

> Can anyone shed some light on what these allergies are caused from and
> why they only occur in fresh water.

> Al Vorne

This conversation has been around the newsgroup a few times in the past.

Yes, many people have this reaction.  I may be a histamine reaction, but
antihistamines can cause a rebound effect, and are generally not
recommended for prolonged usage.  Many people (myself incl.) have jobs
that prohibit the use of most antihistamines, and for this condition
aren't really effective anyway.

In many cases it is an allergic (over) reaction to something in the
water, and to avoid a lot of screwing around suggest to your doctor to
consider the possibility of rhinitus.  It took me years to get around to
have someone diagnose this.  I'm an airline pilot, and need clear sinus
cavities or it is truly agony for a 5 or 10 day trip.

Mild cortico-steriod mist sprays (similar to asthmastic type inhaler
spray) presciption brand names of Beconase, Rhinalar (Canada), and some
newer, and much improved ***.
The flunisolide solution I use is effective, safe, and medically approved
for my line of work. Many people I sail with, including doctors, have a
similar condition and have found the corticosteriod route is the best
solution.

 
 
 

Fresh Water Allergies--Not in Salt Water

Post by budrea » Thu, 20 Apr 1995 04:00:00


I experienced the same thing(s).  Doctor explanation was that they simply
are allergies...magnified several times over due to the facts that 1) the
pollens are airborn so when you are out in the wind, you are getting a
"supercharge"of them, and 2) the pollens lie on the surface of the water,
so when you fall in, this pollen-laden water is forced into your nose.
As to why most people do not experience this in salt water, apparently has
less to do with the type of water,but more so with the simple fact that,
generally, the wind is not laden with the pollens as described above.

 
 
 

Fresh Water Allergies--Not in Salt Water

Post by Brent Robinso » Thu, 20 Apr 1995 04:00:00


Quote:

> I wouldn't be able to windsurf today if it weren't for my daily snorts
of
> a prescription drug called "Beconase".  I developed lake allergies

after

Quote:
> several friends who do get by with nose plugs.  We've also never had
> problems with salt water, but now one of our most die-hard sailors has

This is exactly the same for me.  I have found that Beconase, while
not completely eliminating the problem, makes it a lot better.  Also,
it seems to work better than, say, just taking an antihistamine tablet
the day of sailing.  

These observations apply to sailing in the Gorge (USA).  No problem
with salt water sailing.  Also, I never noticed a problem when I used
to do white water kayaking a few years back in New Zealand (read
clean, drinkable) rivers.  And, believe me, water really gets up your
nose when floating along upside down, which I did a lot  :-).  

So, I think it must have to do with run-off of something into the
water versus anything fundamental about fresh versus salt water.

Brent.

 
 
 

Fresh Water Allergies--Not in Salt Water

Post by GARY WO » Fri, 21 Apr 1995 04:00:00

I would venture to guess that one of the hundreds of algaes or
'additives' in local fresh water supplies is responsible for your
problems, Alfred.  Lots of folks are sensitive to the low levels of
toxins that are in untreated 'fresh' water.
Around my place we mostly sail a river, so early in the season it is not
too bad, since lots of snow runoff and current.  Later in the summer,
earaches and skin conditions could happen as the water gets ugly.
Not having been to Lake Arenal, I would think it is still pretty clean
and free from most 'unnatural' stuff.  From what I have heard about it,
I would take a nose clip and take the chance !
 
 
 

Fresh Water Allergies--Not in Salt Water

Post by Paul N. Eggint » Fri, 28 Apr 1995 04:00:00

: I would venture to guess that one of the hundreds of algaes or
: 'additives' in local fresh water supplies is responsible for your
: problems, Alfred.  Lots of folks are sensitive to the low levels of
: toxins that are in untreated 'fresh' water.
: Around my place we mostly sail a river, so early in the season it is not
: too bad, since lots of snow runoff and current.  Later in the summer,
: earaches and skin conditions could happen as the water gets ugly.
: Not having been to Lake Arenal, I would think it is still pretty clean
: and free from most 'unnatural' stuff.  From what I have heard about it,
: I would take a nose clip and take the chance !