Top tips to reduce spring allergies

Top tips to reduce spring allergies

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - The first day of Spring 2018 is right around the corner, March 20. Across Louisiana, we've already seen an early hint of the annual spring pollen season, with an abnormally high pollen count 15 out of the last 30 days.

Baton Rouge is already blanketed with blossoms. Warmer temperatures and frequent showers have contributed to the early spring like landscapes. WAFB Meteorologist Steve Caparotta says don't count on the rain to wash away the pollen.

"Heavy rain can hit a blossom and cause a pollen burst," he explained. "And of course, the rain also contributes to a new round of blooms."

But don't be so quick to cast blame on your neighbor's flowery front yard. Pollen comes from plants, trees, grasses, weeds and mold spores.

There are times when allergies can become more than just bothersome. While seasonal allergy symptoms may start as a mild inconvenience, for some allergy sufferers the symptoms can lead to more severe reactions. Allergens are one of the triggers that can cause an asthma attack.

• nasal congestion
• runny nose
• itchy nose
• sneezing
• itchy, watery eyes

When the spring season evolves, allergic symptoms tend to worsen overtime. According to Ochsner Baton Rouge allergy, asthma and immunology specialist Dr. John Erffmeyer, symptoms may intensify and become more troublesome this year. Some sufferers may need to seek treatment from a healthcare provider.

While there isn't a "cure" for seasonal allergies, and it's hard to stop Mother Nature, there are a few things you can do to minimize symptoms.

1. At home and in the car, close the windows and run the air conditioning, if needed.
2. When pollen and mold levels are high, stay indoors.
3. Wear a pollen mask during a prolonged stay outdoors.
4. When you come inside, wash your hair and change your clothes.
5. Ask someone else to mow the lawn and rake leaves.
6. Consider hosing the pollen off your car and front porch often.
7. Don't wear outside shoes in the house.
8. Don't hang clothing or linens outside to dry.
9. Take allergy medication as prescribed.
10. See your physicians if symptoms are worse than normal or become unbearable.

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