Forecasters blame the unseasonably warm weather, and a few cold snaps, for causing plants to bloom early and release the allergy-causing particles. It’s estimated that 50 million Americans have nasal allergies, popularly called hay fever, which is an allergy to pollen or mold, according to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America.
“The snow keeps everything down for a couple of days, but then everything comes back up again,” says Riverton Hospital allergist, Scott Taylor, MD.
Abundant pollen is causing watery eyes, sniffles and sneezing. Your first step in getting relief is to understand what’s causing your particular reactions.
Dr. Taylor encourages patients to find the sources of their allergies and then you can determine what type or types of allergies you may suffer from. In severe cases, suffers have difficulty breathing that can send them to the emergency room.
To lessen the effects of allergic rhinitis during spring pollen season, the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology suggests the following:
- Keep windows closed at night and use air conditioning, which cleans, cools, and dries the air
- Minimize outdoor activities early in the morning, between 5 a.m. and 10 a.m., when pollen is most prevalent
- Keep car windows closed when traveling
- Take a vacation to an area where pollen is not as prevalent, such as the ocean
- Take the medications prescribed by your doctor
- Don't spend much time outdoors when the pollen count is high
- Don't rake leaves during pollen season
- If you are allergic to grass, wear a mask or have someone else mow the lawn
- Don't hang bedding or clothing outside to dry