Temperatures are climbing, which means more allergens may be floating through the air. If you experience a flare-up of symptoms, several potential factors may be the culprit. Making sure you are prepared for a reaction is critical to maintaining your health through the weeks and months you are at risk.
Pollen is produced by plants and trees and is virtually unavoidable during the spring and summer months. Luckily, there are ways you will be able to limit the effect your allergies have on you by checking the local pollen count online. There are several resources available that will calculate the pollen count in your region, including the National Allergy Bureau. Knowing what to expect will make it easier to prepare for potential reactions, including wearing a mask to keep the substance out of your mouth and nose and mouth and taking allergy medications prior to going outside. To prevent reactions from occurring indoors, remove your shoes and jacket as soon as you enter your home and avoid spending time outdoors on windy days. Pollination occurs more frequently in the morning, so make sure you are prepared if you have to walk your dog or are scheduled to go for a run before work.
Mold allergies work similarly to pollen allergies, though the season lasts longer. While pollen allergies have more of an effect during spring and summer months, mold can cause symptoms throughout the year and be found outdoors as well as inside your home. Molds found outdoors include mildew on the grass after a rainstorm or early in the morning and yeast present in fungi. Outdoor mold can cause reactions through the spring and fall. Mold found indoors is more prevalent in dark, moist rooms like bathrooms or basements and can affect you more during the colder months of winter, when you are spending more time indoors in the confined space of your home. Symptoms include sneezing and congestion, as well as eye-watering and irritation.
Pet dander, or the dead skin cells on an animal, is a common allergen. Over one-quarter of homes in the country house a cat as a pet, with just under one-third having a dog. Dander can be present anywhere, affecting the air, carpet, and upholstery in a home similarly to dust. Symptoms include wheezing, congestion, eye-watering and irritation and even asthma. Pet dander allergies can be treated through medication prescribed by a doctor.