Many allergy sufferers can actually get confused about what kind of weather triggers their symptoms. You can be sneezing up a storm when summer pollen is in the air, but you can also be sniffling in winter months. Despite what you might think rain, sun, cold, and heat can all contribute to allergies in different ways. Seasonal allergies affect around 40 million Americans, and while everyone has their own triggers, there are important things you should know about what every change in the weather means, and what you should be doing to protect yourself from allergies in every season. Don’t let the air you breathe ruin your day.
1. Spring Allergies
The main culprit when it comes to spring allergies is pollen, pollen, pollen. In some areas of the country, the pollen count gets high as early as February, so the best way to beat your allergies is to start taking medications before you think you need them. Nasal sprays and antihistamines will help control your allergies before they become too inflamed, so the sooner you get in the habit, the better. If you’re going to be working outside, make sure you have a face mask- it might look silly, but if you’re mowing the lawn it will make all the difference. This is also the time of year to make sure you have a HEPA filter on your vacuum and your air conditioner.
2. Summer Allergies
The dangers of grass pollen are similar in the summer, and many people have sneezing and itchy eyes all the way to fall. But there are other things that can affect you during the summer months, as well. Insects like bees and mosquitos are all over during this season, and many people who suffer from insect allergies don’t even know it until they get stung. Allergic reactions to the smoke from barbecues and plants like poison ivy abound as people are partaking in more outdoor activities. Some kinds of fruit can even aggravate a pollen allergy. Make sure your summer plans include precautions, especially if you have asthma or serious allergies.
3. Fall Allergies
Fall is a big time for allergies thanks to weeds and molds. Pollen from Ragweed and other types of plants can get into the air at alarming numbers, depending on what area of the country you live in. Mold, which is a common cause of asthma, gets into the soil, and also sends spores into the air. In the fall, you should be especially careful of the days becoming windier, and you should keep your windows closed and use your HEPA filter air conditioner as often as possible. Also make sure that when the leaves fall off the trees, you don’t let them stick around your yard – decaying leaves are an allergen magnet.
4. Winter Allergies
In the winter, it can be difficult to tell allergies from the pervasive winter cold. But either way, a humidifier is a great idea for creating moisture inside – relief from the dry, cold air outdoors. Humidifiers will help dry skin and stuffy noses, as long as you get a good one that won’t go overboard and create mold. Also, make sure you are showering to wash the allergens off your skin and be careful of increases in pet dander when you keep your dogs and cats inside more on cold winter months.
Many allergy triggers like mold and pollen can be present in some form all year round, but the way allergies affect you and your lifestyle can change with the weather. It’s important to know the best ways to keep allergens out of your lungs when you are stepping out the door, rain or shine. No matter what the month, everyone wants to feel a little better.