Strong winds and pollen increase allergy symptoms

SACRAMENTO - Itchy, watery eyes, sneezing and a runny nose are all symptoms of seasonal nasal allergies.

There are various triggers for allergies. A common trigger during the spring is pollen. Pollen levels increase as tree, grasses, and other plants bloom.

According to the American Academy of Allergy Asthma & Immunology, an allergic reaction begins in the immune system. When you have an allergy, your immune system mistakes it for an invader and produces an antibody to fight against the "invader". The antibodies travel to cells that release histamine and other chemicals, causing an allergic reaction.

There are approximately 35 million allergy sufferers across the nation. Medications help alleviate symptoms for most. For others, routine allergy shots will help during allergy season.

News10 Chief Meteorologist Monica Woods receives bi-monthly allergy shots. "I'm allergic to some trees, but it's mostly grasses," she said. "This is year two of shots and I've seen a big improvement. My reaction to the shots is shorter and I use less medication."

In addition to medications, you can avoid triggers by limiting your exposure. The best time to go outside is during the afternoon when pollen levels are lower.

Here are some tips from WebMD:

· Try to stay inside on dry, windy days, when the air is more likely to have pollen and allergy symptoms are often at their worst.

· If you go outside, change clothes as soon as possible and take a shower to rinse pollen from your skin and hair.

· Keep outside clothes in the laundry room and out of the bedroom or bathroom. If you have to work in the yard, wear a mask while you work.


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