Weather sparks seasonal allergies
The rainy, wet weather Marion County saw in 2019 can trigger outdoor allergies for many people, bringing misery and a potential for infections.
County health nurse Diedre Serene said the most common outdoor allergy triggers are mold and grass, tree, and weed pollen.
It helps if people know their triggers, so they can take steps to avoid them.
“If there’s been flooding, make sure you take care of the mold,” Serene said. “The visual mold of course, but there are some molds that can’t be seen. You need to air things out and try to dry it out.”
Allergies cause itchy, watery, or swollen eyes, congestion, coughing, sneezing, runny nose, or skin reactions such as hives or rash.
If allergy symptoms show up, Serene said nasal or eye secretions that are yellow or green probably indicate an infection, and the sufferer should see their doctor.
Over-the-counter products, such as decongestants and antihistamines, might be helpful in controlling symptoms. If those products don’t work, a visit to a doctor might be in order.
Traci Lanning, owner of Lanning Pharmacy in Marion, said she recommends antihistamines, such as Zyrtec, Allegra or Claritin, for mild allergy symptoms.
“I like to recommend generic Zyrtec because it has a faster onset — helpful if only taken as needed — and I think it works better,” Lanning said.
For more severe symptoms, she recommends nasal steroid sprays such as Flonase, Nasacort, and Rhinocort.
She recommends Sudafed for nasal congestion, and Zaditor or Alaway for eye symptoms.
For people who want to try a natural or homeopathic remedy, Lanning suggests saline nasal sprays, a sinus wash such as a neti-pot, Similasan Allergy Eye Relief, and Hylands Allergy Relief for Kids.
Last modified Sept. 12, 2019