Spring Into Allergy Awareness

By Sherrie Pratt

Springtime. It’s a beautiful season of the year. The weather is warmer, and flowers are in bloom again. However, beautiful buds can lead to what feels like prickly allergy symptoms, including a scratchy throat, dry cough, runny nose, runny eyes, and clearing one’s throat.

Central Florida Health Care’s Dr. Tomas De Brigard says that patients with known symptoms should typically start medication at the end of February to mitigate the problem. Still, it’s never too late to get allergies under control. He says this time of year is when allergy season peaks because the pollen count is high.

An allergy is a condition in which an individual’s immune system overreacts to allergens. Contacting those allergens releases a chemical found in some of the body’s cells called histamine, which causes allergy symptoms.

Did you know there are indoor and outdoor allergies? Dust mites, mold, and pet dander are just a few causes of indoor allergies. Outdoor allergies can develop from mold, hay, straw, weeds, grass, trees, etc. If you deal with allergies all year long, you’re most likely suffering from indoor allergies.

Thankfully there are ways to relieve your allergy symptoms, including:

  • Frequently vacuuming.
  • Using an air purifier.
  • Leaving shoes outside when coming into the house.
  • Not going outside on windy, dry days.
  • Keeping windows closed.

Since pollen can stick to your clothes, hair, and skin, Dr. De Brigard recommends taking a shower after spending extended hours outside. Keep pets well-groomed, too, and clean their blankets and toys. If desired, Dr. De Brigard also suggests having some allergy testing done (a blood test) to see if you’re allergic to any foods or elements in the environment.

If you are concerned about allergies and want to learn more, we invite you to make an appointment with one of our knowledgeable providers, who can discuss a treatment plan.