41 Reasons to Sneeze

Sometimes it seems as though we never get a break. For many Americans, the summer has been just an extension of the spring allergy season. Plus, some parts of the country experienced heavy rain which can lead to production of mold spores; yet another sinus aggravator.

Fall is right around the corner and environmental experts are now saying that the Ragweed season will be especially intense, especially in the East.

Ragweeds are flowering plants in the sunflower family.  There are 41 species worldwide (15 in the U.S.) and they are big-time pollen producers.

ragweed, pollen, airborne irritants, fall allergy season,

These pretty flowers can produce one billion pollen particles every day.

It used to be that North America’s high mountain and desert areas had little or no ragweed growth and thus were refuges for hay fever sufferers. But guess what? Each ragweed plant can produce a billion pollen grains every day. That pollen becomes airborne and can travel hundreds of miles.

In fact, ragweed thrives on carbon dioxide so the issue of Global Warming plays a role in spreading this pollen source. Ragweed pollen is pretty much everywhere in the United States and moving to another region will likely not give you any relief.

So what can you do? According to Ed Neuzil, ARNP, PhD and owner of Allergy, Sinus and Asthma Family Health Center in Lady Lake Florida, you should do your best to avoid exposure:

  1.  Check pollen counts in your area.
  2. Try to stay indoors on windy days.
  3. If you do go outside, remove your clothing and launder it immediately after coming inside and take a shower. Be sure to rinse your nose, eyes and hair of pollen.
  4. An herbal-enhanced saline spray can help get rid of airborne irritants that you inhale while outside.

Still think you’re immune? According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of American, 75 percent of Americans are allergic to ragweed. By late summer, 10 to 20 percent of the population suffers from symptoms such as sneezing, stuffy, itchy and runny noses.

The good news is that the ragweed plant only lives one season and you can look for comfort and relief when the frost sets in and kills the plant.

 

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