February 26, 2019
Even though cold and flu season is on its way out, you won’t get much of a break from the sniffles because seasonal allergies will begin to emerge soon enough.
For some folks, the allergies are akin to a cold — filled with coughing and sneezing — that sticks around for months. Consider this your warning that allergy season is knocking on our door.
According to the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, spring allergies begin in February and stick around until the early summer in most parts of the United States. Tree pollination begins is the first to trigger allergies every year, followed by grass pollination later in the spring and summer and ragweed in the late summer and fall, the ACAAI explains.
If a particular area experiences a rainy spring, that promote rapid plant growth and an increase in mold which could lead allergy symptoms to linger well into the fall, the ACAAI explains.
Allergy symptoms — which can include watery eyes, stuffy nose, lots of sneezing, coughing, wheezing, and rashes — rear their ugly heads when a person's immune system is triggered by a seemingly innocent substance like pollen (or mold and ragweed), Women’s Health explains.
As for the timing of seasonal allergies, it's hard to say when they'll actually hit. "It really depends on when the trees start to pollinate in your region," Dr. Lakiea Wright, a board-certified physician in internal medicine and allergy and immunology at Brigham and Women's Hospital, tells Popsugar:
"However, no matter where you live, if you tend to experience allergy symptoms such as itchy, watery eyes or nasal congestion, it's wise to talk to your healthcare provider about getting tested to determine what, exactly, you're allergic to."
After some allergy testing, your doctor will likely compile a treatment plan specific to your allergy needs. This will likely include things like when you should take an over-the-counter antihistamine or prescription medication, Popsugar explains.
Needless to say, allergy season is probably just weeks away. With that in mind, Women's Health reminds us that Pollen.com has a National Allergy Map which features nationwide daily allergy forecasts and an Allergy Alert app that gives more specific forecasts that include information on specific allergens.