Are you feeling them already?

Eyes itching and watery? Throat scratchy?

Wondering what’s up and why seasonal allergies are worse this year in White Plains, Hartsdale, all throughout Westchester?

It’s not your imagination.

This winter the northeast got slammed with record breaking amounts of snow.

As we moved into April, the last of the snow melted, much later into the spring season than in previous years, and as it melted, excessive amounts of moisture has been in the air, leading to increased counts of mold and mold spores. At the same time, global warming is considered to be partly responsible for the unpredictable shift, the increased carbon dioxide and climate change stimulating pollen growth. This then makes pollen more prevalent and potent.

Mold and pollen are huge allergic triggers, and so this year, even those who aren’t normally allergic may be experiencing seasonal allergies.

The good news is that depending on the severity of the allergies, there are steps we can take to prevent the effects of allergies from taking over our lives before turning to medication, by controlling your environment.

Preventing Seasonal Allergies:

  • If allergic to pollen, check the pollen count for the day before venturing out. Try to avoid going out on days when the pollen count is high
  • Keep the air conditioner on in the house or the office to filter the air. When driving, keep the air conditioner on as well.
  • When out in the yard or a park, remove clothes when returning into your home. Don’t put clothes in the hamper, rather place in a plastic bag and and put directly into the wash. An extra rinse could not hurt
  •  Also, when pollen count is high, take frequent showers, especially after returning from outside

Of course if all else fails, over the counter medications like Zyrtec or Flonase nasal sprays are effective, or Clariton, or Allegra can be taken orally. If you are very sensitive and these over the counter meds are ineffective steroidal medications can be prescribe.

Important tip: remember that allergy medications can take up to 2 weeks to fully integrate into your system. Think ahead this season and plan accordingly.

If you are not sure if you are suffering from a cold or from seasonal allergies, come in to AFC Urgent Care Hartsdale for an evaluation. We are here to help.