April showers bring May flowers and May flowers bring pollen. Pollen can cause seasonal rhinitis that usually appears in spring along with blooming flowers. Because pollen is produced by flowers, grass, trees, and weeds, it is nearly impossible to avoid in daily life.
Pollen is lightweight and disperses through the air. The width of an average pollen particle is less than the width of an average human hair. When pollen is inhaled, it can deposit on the nasal mucous and the proteins in the grains can trigger allergic reactions. Pollen on the nasal mucous can cause nasal inflammation.
According to the Nation Institute of Health, approximately 35 million Americans are sensitive to pollen. Pollen allergy symptoms vary but can interfere with a sufferer’s quality of life. Some of these symptoms are sneezing, wheezing, nasal congestion, coughing, itchy eyes, watery eyes, runny nose, itchy throat, a stomach ache, itchy skin, hives, fatigue, and irritability.
The National Allergy Bureau has daily pollen counts for your locale that calclates the given amount of pollen in the air during a 24 hour period. Generally, pollen counts are higher between 10 in the morning and 4 in the afternoon.
Reducing pollen exposure is very important. Keep your doors and windows closed to avoid contaminating your house. If you have a pet that goes outside, wipe its fur off before it comes back in because their fur can trap pollen particles and carry them inside. Although sun dried clothes are nice, if you dry them in a dryer instead of outside then you are less likely to have a reaction.