Thanks to climate change, pollen season is starting earlier than expected, making it difficult for people who have allergies. Not only are they starting earlier, but also, are lasting longer than usual. People were used to allergy season beginning in March, but now, it starts as early as mid-February.
According to statistics, about 60 million people in the United States alone experience rhinitis or hay fever symptoms every year, and sadly, numbers are increasing due to the drastic change of season. How exactly is climate change worsening allergy symptoms, and what can you do about it? Keep reading to find out!
Climate Change and Allergies
It’s no surprise that the climate is changing drastically more and more each day, and it’s all thanks to humanity. Humans have continued to increase the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, making plants grow bigger, including the plants that spread pollen, such as flowers.
Global warming seems to be increasing more as well, causing drastic changes of season such as warmer winters and earlier springs, making plants start their pollen production early. The earlier plants start this production, the earlier you’ll experience allergy symptoms. Spring allergies are the most problematic.
How Pollen Affects You
Many people are allergic to pollen, and it can trigger a variety of reactions. If you’re allergic to pollen, what happens is that if you breathe it in, your anti-bodies will help your body release chemical mediators, leading to inflammation. You’ll then experience annoying symptoms such as itchy and red eyes, sneezing, coughing, wheezing, or a runny rose.
How to Treat Allergies
Even though hay fever and rhinitis are often easy to cope with, they can still get in the way of your daily activities. Here are a few simple strategies you can put into practice to help keep your allergies under control.
Pollen rises and circulates more in the air on dry and windy days, so try to stay indoors on these days. Another suggestion you can follow is to change out of your clothing the moment you get home if you’ve spent most of your time outdoors. Other tips such as avoiding hanging your clothes to dry outside or wearing a face mask whenever you have to perform outdoor activities can also help.
Not only should you protect yourself when it comes to facing the outdoors but, keeping your indoor air clean is also vital. Try to keep your house well ventilated with air conditioning and implement air filters in your vents. Use a dehumidifier to keep the air dry and moisture-free and when it comes to cleaning, make sure to vacuum and dust thoroughly on a regular basis.
You can also look into purchasing over-the-counter drugs formulated to treat allergy symptoms, such as decongestants and oral antihistamines. Nasal sprays are also one of the most effective ways to treat allergies. Check this out!
Face the Change of Season the Right Way
Allergies are annoying, but knowing how climate change causes a spike in your allergies, you’ll learn how to prepare for the following change of season and face allergies the right way. If you want to keep learning about health-related topics, don’t stop now and keep exploring our blog!