Fall allergy season is here

Published 11:46 am Wednesday, October 5, 2016

There’s a lot to look forward to now that fall has officially arrived, but allergies is not one of them.

It starts with cold-like symptoms, you know the feeling. 

Unlike a cold that goes away within a week, hay fever, also called allergic rhinitis, lingers until the cause of the allergic reaction is identified and treated. One of the most common causes, especially during the fall allergy season, is ragweed. 

Ragweed begins to pollinate in mid-August and sticks around until a hard freeze. Mold can also cause problems for allergy sufferers at any time of the year, but a warmer-than-normal fall, high humidity or windy conditions can allow mold spores to be released into the air for an extended period of time.

Many indoor allergies can worsen in the fall as we begin to stay indoors more too. 

While you can’t get rid of all the allergens in your home, you can minimize them. 

Here are a few tips:

— Wash your sheets weekly in hot water and your blankets every two to three weeks to kill dust mites.

— Replace pillows every two to three years.

— Encase your mattress, pillows and other padded furniture with allergen-proof covers.

Sometimes signs of allergies aren’t straightforward so you can’t distinguish an allergy from the common cold. This is especially true with children. 

If you or your child has cold symptoms that last more than a week or seem to occur at the same time every year, you may want to talk with your health care provider about it. 

For more information on healthy living, contact us at the Clark County Extension Office at 744-4682.