Ask Todd: Freezes delaying allergy season

10:07 PM, Apr 4, 2013   |    comments
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Lots of people are happy about spring-like weather this weekend, especially after seeing cooler temps this week, but that also means allergy season is on its way.

Michael Martin asks: "Does the local freezing and frost have an effect on the pollen we will have to deal with later?

Michael, that's a great question and the short answer is yes.

The frost and cool temps have prevented buds from blooming and releasing the pollen. That means this year's allergy season will be stronger.

Our friend Dr. Bob Overholt explains, "We've had low pollen counts this spring, but it's waiting to come. Some people feel like the delayed tree pollen that will be coming out in its full force plus grass pollen-- they're going to be coming out at the same time. So we're going to be double dipping and have a double worse allergy season in the months of April and May."

Of course that's not great news, but there are some things you can do to help lessen the blow of a strong allergy season.

First, Dr. Bob recommends taking care of it sooner rather than later before your allergies get bad. He recommends nasal sprays, anti-histamines, and eye drops. He also says your best bet is to regulate your time outside so you're not dealing with the worst effects.

"You cannot avoid pollen; pollen is everywhere you go. But the pollen count is lower in the morning. So if you go out for a walk, make that walk early in the morning. If it's a windy day, it's going to blow the pollen around. Don't go out for a walk on windy days. If you're in your car, roll up the window. Make sure the air conditioner is going in the house. All those things will help. Then taking your medications regularly will also help," he advised.

So yes, the local freezing is delaying the allergy season, but that just means it will come back fiercer and stronger over the next two months, especially with the warmer weather and sunshine we'll see next week.

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