What Can I Do About It
There is no cure for a ragweed pollen allergy. But there are ways to treat and manage it.
Track the pollen count for your area. The news media often reports the count for your area, especially when pollen is high. You also can get your areas pollen counts from the National Allergy Bureau.
Stay indoors in central air conditioning when the pollen count is high. Get a CERTIFIED asthma & allergy friendly® air filter for your air conditioner. If you do spend time outside, try to go out in the afternoons and evenings. Ragweed pollen peaks in mornings.
Prevent pollen from being tracked into your home. If you spend a lot of time outside during peak pollen time:
- Take your shoes off outside
- Dont wear your outside clothes to bed
- Cover your hair when outside or wash it at night
You might even consider moving to get away from ragweed. This will often help you feel better for a short time. But you can develop allergies to plants in your new location in a few years. And ragweed is found in every state except Alaska. A well-thought out treatment plan is a better way to live with your allergies.
Take anti-inflammatory or antihistamine medicines, and start treatment in the summer. Many over-the-counter medicines work well to control pollen allergy symptoms. They can also help eye, nose and asthma symptoms. Many newer antihistamines dont cause as much drowsiness as older ones.
With SLIT, you take a small dose of an allergen under your tongue. You also gradually become more sensitive.
The Spring Allergy Season Arrives In New York City
Do you have allergy symptoms already? Well, thereâs a reason for your sneezing.
What You Need To Know
- The spring allergy season starts in March
- Spring pollen peaks near Mother’s Day
- The spring allergies taper off in early June
It may not have felt like it recently, but spring is almost here. The equinox is less than a week away. It will occur on Sunday, March 20.
As the days get longer and temperatures warm, the trees and plants that have been dormant wake up from their winter slumber. That means they produce pollen.
Last week, pollen started showing up on allergy reports for the five boroughs. Levels so far are moderate with maple and elm trees, the primary sources of our allergies in New York City. Juniper bushes are also adding to the pollen count.
The spring allergy season for New York City begins in the second week of March, peaks in May and fades in June.
As our climate warms, weâve seen pollen season getting earlier. Overall, the growing season in our area is now about three weeks longer than it was in the past.
Health experts recommend stocking up on allergy medicine now, so that you have it on hand as the pollen count rises.
Also, to reduce the effects of pollen, you can keep your window shut. Put your pillow in a plastic cover when youâre not using it and use air filters. Wearing a mask can also help reduce the impact of pollen.
Maple and oak trees are the main irritants for allergy sufferers.
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In California, allergy season will peak in early April. As the days become longer, tree pollen begins to cover everything in a fine yellow haze, but that will wind down by the latter half of April, into May.
Still, if you suffer from pollen allergies, this is prime weather for sneezing, irritated eyes and itchy skin.
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When Will Allergy Season Peak In 2021 An Allergy Forecast
Spring is creeping up fast in the United States, and that means warmer weather is on the horizon after a rough winter in some regions, but for those who suffer from seasonal allergies, there may only be a few weeks left in some parts of the country before allergens begin to kick into full gear. And one part of the nation is already beginning to feel the effects of the spring pollen season.
New research from Germany suggests that climate change is now causing allergy season to last longer, as rising temperatures are causing plants to bloom earlier, and pollen from early-blooming locations are traveling into later-blooming locations, UPI recently reported.
AccuWeather meteorologists, led by Senior Meteorologist Alan Reppert, released their annual spring allergy forecast this week, after digging into the data and exploring which areas of the country may experience an early or extended season as well as which areas could face higher-than-usual pollen counts.
Simply put, different allergens will begin to affect Americans at different points in the season, depending on the region and the weather conditions. AccuWeather forecasters have you covered on where in the U.S. allergy sufferers may need to stock up on tissues — and keep the windows closed at times this upcoming season.
Tree pollen forecast
The Southeast is already beginning to experience the first effects of allergy season. Trees around the Gulf Coast in particular, Reppert said, have begun releasing pollen.
How To Lessen Allergies
Those experiencing allergies have a few options to avoid or combat symptoms: avoidance, medications, and immunotherapy.
Im a big proponent of avoidance because we know that if you can avoid the allergen, youre actually decreasing your inflammatory reaction from even starting, Kachru said.
Dr. Marissa A. Love, an allergy and immunology specialist at the University of Kansas Health System, had similar advice.
Learning what allergens cause the persons symptoms is helpful so they can try to avoid them, she told Healthline. Monitoring the daily pollen counts is also helpful. When the pollen counts are high, you can minimize your exposure by closing the windows, minimizing time outside, or taking a shower after being outdoors.
There are other options for those experiencing allergy symptoms.
There are steroid nasal sprays, antihistamine nasal sprays, saline nasal rinses, oral antihistamines, and oral decongestants, Love added. There are also prescription medications that can be used. It does help to start these medications before the season gets underway.
During COVID-19, mask use has meant some people experienced fewer symptoms from pollen allergies than they used to, Ference says.
Masks that have filtration levels that can catch the small particles like pollen can help prevent against the inhalation of pollen, he said. You just have to make sure that your mask is clean.
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First Know Your Allergens
Seasonal allergies are typically caused by grass, tree or weed pollens. Different plants release pollen at different times of the year, Dr. Rubinstein says.The worst season for someone with allergies depends on which plant pollen causes their allergies.
Grass pollen is a major allergy trigger in Northern California from March through June. Different trees make pollens at different times, which can cause sensitivity year-round. Weed pollens are more common in summer and early fall. Talk to your doctor about allergy testing. Once you know what causes your allergies, you can take steps to protect yourself.
What Is A Ragweed Pollen Allergy
The job of your immune system is to find foreign substances, like viruses and bacteria, and get rid of them. This response normally protects us from harmful diseases. People with allergies have immune systems that react when they come in contact with allergens. When you are allergic to ragweed pollen and inhale it from the air, rhinitis symptoms show up.
Seventeen types of ragweed grow in North America. Ragweed also belongs to a larger family of plants that can spread pollen by wind. These plants can also cause symptoms.
Members of this plant family include:
- Mucus in the throat
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How Can I Tell If My Symptoms Are Allergies Or Covid
Before you stress out, know that there’s one positive aspect when it comes to allergens in the year 2021: “Masks mean less inhalation of pollen through the nose or mouth, and that may translate to decreased symptoms for some sufferers,” explains Manisha Relan, MD, a board-certified allergist. Noted!
That said, if you’re worried about telling the difference between symptoms, whenever they do arise, listen up: The COVID and allergy symptoms that typically overlap are headaches, wheezing, and sore throat. It’s also possible to experience nasal congestion, a runny nose, and sneezing with COVID, too, though these are more commonly allergy symptoms. A dry cough, shortness of breath, and loss of smell, are all likely COVID-19 symptoms, though there’s always the possibility that these are the side effects of allergies.
Overall, though, if you’re having trouble telling if your symptoms are allergies or COVID, your best bet is to check in with a doctor’s office or urgent-care center.
Along With Warmer Temps Spring Unfortunately Brings Misery To Those Who Suffer From Allergies
It’s officially spring! While that means warmer temps, super-blooms and the slow crawl towards summer, the season also brings allergies.
“At some point during the year, an estimated 50 to 60 million people in the U.S. – – as much as 20 percent of the population – – struggle with allergies,” Weatherbug reports.
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If I’ve Never Had Allergies Before Am I In The Clear
If you grew up in a place like Sacramento, Stockton or Modesto where people are prone to allergies, you are less likely, as an adult, to develop them. However, it is still possible.
Many people who move to Sacramento, Modesto or Stockton from the Bay Area develop allergies quickly when they arrive. On the other hand, newcomers from further away may not see allergy symptoms for two years because it takes the body a few cycles before developing sensitivities to the pollen.
What Can I Do If My Allergy Meds Aren’t Workingor My Allergies Are Getting Worse
If you’re already taking OTC allergy meds , allergy shots, a.k.a. allergen immunotherapy, make your immune system less reactive to allergens , and for some people, they can even induce a cure, says Dr. Parikh.
By giving small increasing doses of what you are allergic to, you train the immune system to slowly stop being as allergic, she says. This is the best way to address allergies, as it targets the underlying problem and builds your immunity to a specific allergen.
The downside? Allergy shots are a bit of a time commitment. You’ll need to get them once a week for six to eight months, then once a month for a minimum of two years, says Dr. Parikh. You need to be a little bit patient, too, because it can take about six months to start feeling better . But a life without allergies? Sounds worth it to me.
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How Climate Change Makes Allergies Worse
Allergies are the result of the immune system overreacting to something that is otherwise benign. That can lead to annoying but mild symptoms like hives or itchy eyes. But it can also cause life-threatening complications like anaphylaxis, where blood pressure plummets and airways start swelling shut.
Pollen is one of the most common allergens. Its produced as part of the reproductive cycle of plants. The timing of pollen production varies depending on the plant species, with trees peaking in the spring, grass over the summer, and ragweed in the fall.
There are two main ways that humans are changing pollen production. One mechanism is that humans are increasing the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere by burning fossil fuels. Atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations have risen from 280 parts per million in the 1800s to 420 ppm today.
When CO2 goes up, plants tend to grow a little bigger, said William Anderegg, an assistant professor of biology at the University of Utah. They tend to put out more flowers as a fraction of their mass, and individual flowers tend to have actually more pollen on them.
Plants that produce more pollen tend to produce more seeds. That also means more pollen-spewing plants in the next season.
The combination of these two factors is leading to more pollen production and over a longer period of time.
When Does The Ragweed Allergy Season Start And End In California
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Allergy Forecast: A Bad Year For Everyone
Like taxes, allergy season is one of those things you just cant avoid. In fact, due to climate change, it may be getting worse. Warmer temperatures lead to more pollen production, so 2021 may be the most intense allergy season yet. And due to COVID-19 quarantine, children may especially have a rough year.
When is allergy season?
It starts in the spring and continues until the fall, but different allergens, the substances that trigger allergies, appear at different times.
: As spring begins, tree pollen is the top allergen, followed by weeds and grasses. In some parts of Maryland, its not unusual to see cars covered by the itchy stuff.
May to July: In May, all the trees, grass and weeds gang up to pump out allergens, making it a bad time for allergy sufferers. This is the start of peak allergy season, which continues until July.
: Enter ragweed, a common flowering plant. Ragweed is the leading cause of seasonal allergies, with 75% of all sufferers allergic to it.
With temperatures falling and plants starting to go dormant, the air starts to clear, bringing an end to outdoor allergy season. Now its possible to breathe a sigh of relief without coughing.
See the Interactive Allergy Forecaster for allergy conditions where you live.
COVID-19 and childrens allergies
Surviving allergy season
If your or your childs allergy symptoms are severe or continue a long time, your health care provider may be able to help or refer you to an allergist.
Do You Have Seasonal Allergies Or Covid
Having seasonal allergies is annoying at any time, but it creates some challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic. “With COVID out there, differentiating between the two has been difficult,” Corbett said, because there can be some overlap in the symptoms of allergies and a coronavirus infection.
Some of the symptoms can be similar because, with a viral infection, you’re going to have congestion and runny nose,” Azar explained. But there are some ways to differentiate the two conditions, he said.
For instance, despite the nickname “hay fever,” allergies don’t typically cause a fever, Corbett said. So, if you’re feeling congested and your temperature is up, that’s a sign you might have something other than allergies.
Also, if you have systemic symptoms, like body aches or a general feeling of being unwell, that’s another reason to think beyond allergies, Azar said. “Plus, with COVID, there’s some significant problems with people having reduced sense of smell and taste.”
If you have some ambiguous symptoms and you’re not sure what you’re dealing with, it’s definitely worth taking a COVID-19 test just in case.
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The Effects Of Pollen
Pollen exposure can trigger a variety of allergic reactions.
When we breathe in pollen, if youre allergic it would be recognized by our antibodies, and those antibodies will trigger cells in our bodies to release chemical mediators, which lead to inflammation. The most common of these mediators is histamine, and the histamine leads to the symptoms of the itching, the watery eyes, the runny nose, the sneezing, and the coughing that people have, Dr. Elisabeth D. Ference, an otolaryngologist at Keck Medicine of USC in California, told Healthline.
The things that people should look out for for pollen allergies are itching eyes, itching nose, sneezing, eye redness, cough, itching in the throat, itching ears postnasal drainage or nasal drip from their nose, she added. They should seek out medical help whenever they feel that their symptoms are severely affecting their quality of life or if they dont respond to typical treatment such as over-the-counter antihistamine medications or over-the-counter nasal steroid spray.
Tonya Winders, CEO of the Allergy & Asthma Network, says any allergy symptoms should be taken seriously.
It can be quite debilitating and even dangerous, especially if people suffer from asthma attacks as a result, she told Healthline.
A Scripps Allergist Offers Tips To Keep Symptoms Under Control
More than 50 million Americans suffer from allergies. In fact, allergies are the sixth leading cause of chronic illness in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
And while San Diegans who moved here from other regions are often relieved to find the seasonal allergies they suffered with back home seem to disappear, they might be surprised to learn San Diego has an allergy season too. It begins January 1 and ends December 31.
This region is unique. Theoretically, if the wind is blowing off the ocean, we should have very little pollen in the air, says Ronald Simon, MD, an allergist at Scripps Clinic. But when we get a Santa Ana wind condition, we get hit with allergens from as far away as Nevada and Arizona. And after rains, the trees, weeds and grasses in our canyons wake up and send out pollen clouds.
Allergies can make colds worse
Because San Diego doesnt have four distinct seasons like the East and the Midwest, allergens are in the air constantly. This can exacerbate nasal allergies, triggering chronic drainage and congestion, leaving allergy sufferers vulnerable to sinus infections, bronchitis and colds.
Indoor allergies are different here
Because Southern California never experiences hard freezes and frosts, mold spores never entirely go away here. In fact, local rain patterns and cool temperatures create optimal conditions for them to multiply.
Keep allergy symptoms under control
1. Avoidance and barriers
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