Pollen: it’s a menace. At least for the 50 million + Americans with allergies.
Allergies are the sixth leading cause of chronic illness in the United States. The most common type of allergy is an allergy to pollen or various types of pollens, a condition known as allergic rhinitis, or hay fever. Pollen allergy or allergic rhinitis can cause many unpleasant symptoms. Thankfully, science has afforded allergy sufferers a plethora of effective treatment options. Read on to learn what is pollen allergy and our best tips for dealing with it.
What is Pollen Allergy?
Worldwide, between 10 to 30 percent of the population suffer from some type of pollen allergy. But what is pollen allergy? What causes it? As the name implies, pollen allergy is caused by pollen. Each fall, spring, an summer, plants such as weeds, trees and grasses release billions of grains of pollen into the air.
These microscopic particles cannot be seen by the naked eye, but can wreak havoc on local populations as they are carried miles away by currents of air. While the purpose of these particles is fertilization, many pollen grains do not reach their organic destinations, and instead are caught in human noses and throats and on skin and hair. Of all allergens, pollen is by far the most dominant.
Pollen Allergy Symptoms
Pollen allergy is a common condition that causes a variety of “classic” allergy symptoms, including sneezing, runny or stuffy nose, watery or red eyes, and an itchy nose, eyes, or roof of the mouth. Pollen allergy, or allergic rhinitis, may occur only at certain times of the year (seasonal) or may be persistent year-round (perennial).
Those with perennial allergic rhinitis are often also sensitive to indoor allergens such as dust, cockroaches, and mold spores.
Pollen Allergy Treatment
As with all allergies, the best treatment option for pollen allergy is avoiding the allergen altogether. Obviously, that is not possible in modern day life. While there is no easy way to totally evade wind borne pollen, you can learn to avoid it better. Things like keeping your home allergen-free and protecting your mouth and eyes from pollen while outside can make a big difference.
There are also many effective medications that can alleviate or almost entirely eliminate allergy symptoms. These include decongestants, antihistamines, and over the counter and prescribed medication. Talk to your Sneeze doctor about the best pollen allergy treatment plan for you.