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Do Allergies Get Worse After Rain

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I joined the Lung Association in 2014 because I was attracted to its comprehensive missionto save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease. Every day we help Americans breathe easier through our efforts to fund innovative research, advocate for policies that protect our lungs, and educate patients, caregivers, providers, and the public with science-backed information. We were founded more than 115 years ago, and the needs are greater today than ever before, including the youth vaping epidemic, climate change, and COVID-19!

Do Kids Typically Outgrow Their Hay Fever

Kids do sometimes outgrow allergies. A lot of food-related allergies can be outgrown, particularly mild ones, though this varies from person to person. But seasonal allergies usually stick with you for life.

Some people find help from immunotherapy in the form of allergy shots or sublingual tablets. That can help you develop a tolerance for a particular allergen. However, once you’ve had an allergic reaction to one thing in your environment , you tend to develop more. That’s known as the priming effect. The priming effect means that once you’ve been primed to react to one allergen, you’re more likely to react to another one. So once you’ve defeated a grass pollen allergy, a mold allergy might crop up next, or a tree pollen allergy.

Do Allergies Ever Develop As An Adult

Allergies rarely develop as brand new cases as adults. That’s not to say it never happens, though. However, many adults experience symptoms afresh and wonder how and why.

Although you may have developed a fresh new case of allergies, there’s often a different explanation. Allergies seem to go through stages. Many people experience intense allergy symptoms as children and adolescents, only to find that their symptoms recede in young adulthood. Then later in life those allergies tend to roar back to life. In their 30s, a time when many become parents, allergy sufferers often suffer like they did as kids. Some speculate this has something to do with the colds kids bring home to Mom and Dad, since both colds and allergies influence the immune system.

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How Does Rain Affect Allergies

After the heat weve experienced this summer, many of us are looking forward to the rain that comes every fall in the Pacific Northwest.

Many people think of fall as the end of allergy season, but for many, this is not true. Fall allergens such as ragweed and year-round allergens like dust mites and mold spores can flare up even in rainy weather. In fact, for many, rain makes allergies worse.

How Does Rain Make Allergies Worse

Rain

Initially, a spring shower can seem like a good thing: The pollen thats in the air may cling to rain drops and literally get washed from the air, says Stanley Schwartz, M.D., Ph.D., division chief of Allergy-Immunology-Rheumatology at the University at Buffalo in New York.

But rain can also break up pieces of pollen on the ground, spreading them further. The pollen grains can rupture, and you get these fragments that remain in the air for quite some time, explains Catherine Monteleone, M.D., an allergist-immunologist and professor at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School. Those can get deep into your nose and lungs and cause allergy symptoms.

Rain can also indirectly make pollen counts worse by nourishing the plants that release pollen into the air, Dr. Schwartz says. Rain and warm weather all stimulate flowering plants, leading to more luxuriant plant growth, he says. If you have a good warm and wet season, the pollen counts can end up being very high.

Grass and weed pollen can be especially triggering for allergy sufferers, says Purvi Parikh, M.D., an allergist and immunologist with the Allergy & Asthma Network. For some people, it can be dangerous and trigger serious breathing issues and asthma attacks, she notes.

In rare situations, thunderstorms can trigger asthma attacks due to a phenomenon known as thunderstorm asthma, which is when a combination of air flow, humidity, and electricity stir up pollen in the air, triggering symptoms in some people.

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Do Allergies Get Better Around The Time You Retire

As you get past age 65, your immune system begins to decline. That has negative consequences but the silver lining for allergy sufferers is that your sniffling may go away. People between the ages of 18 and 60 have a higher frequency of nasal allergies than older adults.

Fewer allergies doesn’t mean no allergies, though. An estimated 13% to 15% of older adults still get seasonal allergies. For those seniors who still get them, symptoms can be more serious. Medical costs, quality of life issues, and hospitalizations from allergies are more common later in life.

Watch The Weather And Seek Allergy Treatment

Rain can be a good thing for pollen allergies. But you can have too much of a good thing. Next time the showers rain down, be grateful for the temporary relief. If the rains keep pouring down, watch out for a spike in mold, dust, and weed and grass pollen soon after.

You can manage your allergies and allergic asthma by visiting a board-certified allergist to help you manage your symptoms and by tracking the weather and pollen on these sites:

Accuweather/AAFA personalized respiratory forecast Visit Accuweather.com for a personalized asthma forecast for your area. Enter your location. Then from the Personalized Forecasts drop-down menu, choose Respiratory. The Accuweather/AAFA forecast will show asthma alerts along with your forecast. The page also includes tips from AAFA on managing weather-related asthma issues.

National Allergy Bureau Sign up to receive email alerts or download the app from the AAAAI to alert you of your areas pollen counts.

Many treatments are available to help you manage your pollen allergies, no matter what the weather does. AAFAs annual Spring Allergy Capitals report provides insights into cities where people are most affected by spring allergies. to see where your city ranks.

Medical Review July 2017, updated May 2018

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How Does Rain Affect Pollen Levels

Long, hot days are great for outdoor activities, but pollen can threaten to keep you indoors if you have pollen allergies and allergic asthma. They may leave you longing for a rain shower to wash the pollen away. But rain causes plant growth, producing more pollen, right? So is rain good for those with allergies or not?

Why Does My Asthma Get Worse When It Rains And How To Avoid

Stress and Allergy Reactions

Rain is essential for humans as well as survival of living being and vegetation on earth. Rainy season is a favorite season for almost everyone, because it comes after hot summer in many parts of world. However, for people suffering from asthma it may be a nightmare. This is because in many asthmatics the symptoms become worse with rain and thunderstorm.

Asthma is a chronic disease characterized by inflammation of air passage . Asthma is caused due to genetic inheritance or can be triggered by allergies. Common allergens include pollen, dust, molds, weeds, grass, animal dander etc. Weather change, especially rainy season can also trigger a surge in number of acute bronchospasm cases. Let us know the reasons for worsening of asthma in rainy season among asthmatics.

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How Does Rain Worsen Allergies

There are two major ways that rain contributes to allergy symptoms.

First, rain makes pollen counts worse because it nourishes the plants that create the pollen. This especially true when the weather is warm.

Second, falling rain breaks up the pieces of pollen on the ground. When the pollen grains rupture, the fragments can hang in the air for a while until they are inhaled through the nose and into the lungs.

Most commonly, people experience an increase in symptoms for up to 12 hours after the rain clears, depending on the wind situation.

Allergies Worsen During And After Rain

Anyone who has lived in Atlanta for any length of time knows that a good rainstorm will create rivers of yellow as it washes away the pollen that has built up over allergy season. Despite what you might think, the rain actually makes allergy symptoms worse for most people, instead of better. Thats because the rain bursts the pollen particles prior to washing them away, putting higher concentrations of particles into the air.

This is particularly troublesome for people with asthma, especially when you take into account that nearly 95 percent of people diagnosed with asthma also have seasonal allergies. The severe symptoms asthma sufferers experience when it rains is known as thunderclap asthma, which is really an asthma attack triggered by pollen, not rain.

The best thing to do is to stay indoors during rainy weather, and when you do have to go outside, make sure you shower and change clothes when you return home. Otherwise, you could be shedding pollen on your bedding and around your home. Running the air conditioner and making sure air filters are kept clean can also help limit pollen exposure and reduce both asthma and allergy symptoms.

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So Rain Is Always A Good Thing

Not so fast. While a light drizzle may help those with pollen allergies, a heavy storm can break up pollen grains into smaller particles. These smaller particles travel more easily through the air causing the pollen count to skyrocket when the storm passes. Moreover, its disastrous for anyone with mold or dust-mite allergies. Mold loves damp conditions, and dust-mites reproduce much more quickly when its humid. If you suffer from mold or dust-mite allergies, youll want to make sure to open the windows during the winter and spring months to air out the house as much as you can.

How Do I Deal With This

Why Rain Actually Makes Your Allergies Feel Worse ...

The only way to avoid any of these reactions is to stay inside, which isnt all that realistic. Dr. Nicoara strongly believes in getting asthma and allergy symptoms under control. She explains, If you already have inflammation in your nose and sinuses from allergy or your lungs from asthma, anything that youre exposed to whether thats a fragrance or pollen is going to tip you over the edge and be a problem. Allergy treatment can tackle allergy related symptoms and reduce inflammation. By taking control of these conditions, the weather shouldnt cause much of a difference in your symptoms.

Custom sublingual immunotherapy with the La Crosse Method Protocol may get those conditions under control for the long haul affordably and conveniently. For those with asthma induced by allergy, allergy drops may help to eliminate not only allergy symptoms, but may also eliminate asthma symptoms.

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How Mechanical Ventilation Works

Mechanical ventilation works by pulling in freshly filtered air from the outside while moving stagnant indoor air out. It filters the outdoor air, balances its humidity, and dilutes indoor air of other contaminants like dust, seasonal allergies, mold, volatile organic compounds, and odor. These contaminants can leave you and your family feeling ill and fatigued, and contribute to sleep issues.

How Can I Ease My Allergy Symptoms On A Rainy Day

“Don’t forget to take your allergy meds on a regular basis,” Dr. Elliott said, noting that nasal steroid sprays take at least five days to kick in, so they need to be taken for the entirety of allergy season in order to be effective. “On high pollen count days and when there is a storm, have a non-drowsy, as-needed antihistamine handy.”

If your allergy symptoms seem to get worse after it’s rained, Dr. Jain recommends being proactive about treatment in order to avoid experiencing a flare. “You can start taking a daily non-sedating antihistamine such as Zyrtec or Claritin during the rainy season. You can also begin using nasal sprays or your inhaler as needed or at the onset of any mild symptoms,” Dr. Jain said. “Saline nasal sprays are an effective way to reduce irritation or drying out of the nasal mucosa. Intranasal steroids, like Flonase, are also a great controller option to reduce swelling, congestion, postnasal drip, and nasal drainage caused by inhalation of environmental allergens.”

If you know what you’re allergic to, Dr. Jain suggests reducing exposure to known allergies as much as possible. If you don’t, it’s important make an appointment with an allergist so you can get tested and find out the best way to manage your symptoms.

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Have Seasonal Allergies Ever Been Fashionable

Believe it or not, seasonal allergies were once a fashionable fad. How could sneezing, itching, and runny noses be trendy? It all comes down to peoples’ perceptions.

Around the end of the 1800s, people thought of allergies as a disease of the upper classes. It seemed to impact people in the city more than the countryside. This association led observers to believe that education, wealth, and refinement were all linked to hay fever. Certain professions, especially those in the fields of medicine and theology, were thought to lead to allergies.

Associations of hay fever sufferers sprang up, their members proud to be associated with this aristocratic disease. They even acquired a nickname: Hayfeverites. The association between allergy and aristocracy lasted well into the 20th century. A popular play produced in 1924, Hay Fever, lampooned the upper classes. It wasn’t until the 1930s that allergists began to suspect anyone could acquire allergies.

It’s easy today to see how strange and silly these ideas are. But the basic observation that urbanites are more threatened with allergies than those living in the countryside could be true. Today people often develop allergies after moving from rural areas to cities. However, the reason may be more straightforward: urban areas often have pollution, and pollution can set off allergies. What’s more, growing up around farm conditions could prevent allergies in some.

Reason #: Botched Diagnosis

Why Climate Change Is Making Your Allergies Worse

Getting a correct diagnosis also plays a big role in keeping allergy symptoms at bay.

Patients often try to self-diagnose when it comes to things like allergies and sinus headaches, but they don’t always get it right. Maybe you’re sure it’s an allergy, and it’s not. Or maybe you think you’ve got a sinus infection, but you really have an allergy.

If your diagnosis is wrong, your treatment may be all wrong. For instance, if you actually have a tension headache, using an antihistamine won’t improve the situation, says Corinna Bowser, MD, an allergist in Narberth, Pa.

The fix: If you have allergic symptoms or suspect you have an allergy, consult a doctor to find out if it really is an allergy.

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Healthy Air Is On The Way

Find an Aprilaire professional near you.

Note: Aprilaire products are not intended to cure or treat any known airborne diseases. They can help in the reduction of airborne virus particles indoors. Continue to follow guidance from local public health officials, the CDC, and the World Health Organization about indoor and outdoor public gatherings.

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At Aprilaire, we encourage breathing Healthy Air because we know it benefits your overall health. The American Lung Association knows it too. Thats why Aprilaire air filters are the National Proud Partner of the American Lung Association*, playing a key role in the fight to improve lung health and prevent lung disease.

We got to interview National Senior Vice President of Development Sally Draper about the importance of Healthy Air and how both Aprilaire and the American Lung Association are working together to help you Breathe the Fullness of Life.

Letting Furry Friends Sleep In Your Bed

Sure, you love your pets, and snuggling up with them in bed can be cozy. But this tempting habit could be making your allergies worse. Pollen can settle into your pets’ fur, triggering symptoms. Keep your pets out of your bed, or better yet, keep them out of your bedroom altogether.

If your symptoms are particularly bothersome, restricting pets to certain rooms so they can’t wander can help reduce the spread of potential allergens. These steps may be helpful but they’re not foolproof. Allergens can still spread beyond the rooms that pets occupy. If you have pets and you also suffer from seasonal allergies, it’s also a good idea to bathe or groom them at least once a week.

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Can You Predict Bad Allergy Days

Wouldn’t it be nice to know when your allergies are about to strike? If you want to stay ahead of your allergies, the daily pollen count is an effective tool to help you. Groups like the volunteers of the National Allergy Bureau staff dozens of pollen-counting stations across the U.S. and Canada. Using microscopes, the volunteers count and report the amount of pollen in the air that day. The more pollen, the greater your allergy risk.

If you’ll be exposed to the pollen anyway, why bother checking the count? The reason is this: allergy medicine works best if you take it before being exposed to allergens. So a pollen count or forecast can alert you to start taking your medicine, which can hold back the histamine response that causes your sniffling, sneezing, and itching.

Do Allergies Get Worse When It Rains

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Dr. Pien says yes, allergies can get much worse when it rains. This is due to changes in the amount of pollen in the air. She adds that some studies have even shown that pollen grains can rupture or burst, and then be inhaled by people with allergies and asthma.

According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, grass and weed pollen is higher when it rains. When raindrops hit the ground and break up clumps of pollen into smaller particles, those particles quickly spread out. This then leads to a sudden increase in allergy and allergic asthma symptoms during rain showers. This occurs frequently during heavy downpours.

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