Those already dealing with or dreading itchy eyes, runny noses and constant sneezes that come with allergies beware: the fall allergy season is expected to be rough.
The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America says this fall could be the perfect storm as global weather conditions boost ragweed levels and fall storms and tornadoes disperse allergens and outdoor mold.
The AAFA notes how studies suggest that rising temperatures and carbon dioxide levels could extend ragweed season by a month or more, especially in the northern states. In addition, pollen from weeds is a greater problem in the fall. The foundation also emphasizes that outdoor mold from previous storms, including Superstorm Sandy, continues to grow and could be spread further by high winds.
The AAFA has also come out with the top 100 cities where allergies are the worst. Although there is no place immune to allergies, some cities are considered allergy capitals of the country. Topping the list for 2013 is Wichita, KS followed by Jackson, MS and Knoxville, TN. For the full list, click here: http://allergycapitals.com/downloads/AAFA_Fall_Allergy_Capitals.pdf.
Allergies may be one of the most common, yet often ignored, health problems in the country. More people than ever are reporting allergies. Though there is no cure, there is treatment available including prescription and over-the-counter drugs. If your allergies have become a problem, see a physician.
Avoiding allergens is the best way to avoid allergies. Consider wearing a mask when doing yard work like raking leaves. Check the pollen count before venturing out, including in other places you’re traveling to. Wear sunglasses to avoid pollen from getting in your eyes. Wash your hair at night, to rinse out pollens before hitting the sheets where pollen can accumulate. Check your pets for pollen and consider giving Fido a rinse off.