No matter what the time of year, seasonal allergies are always bothersome, causing unpleasant symptoms ranging from a runny nose to a scratchy throat and itchy eyes. Autumn can be a particularly bad allergy season for many who are sensitive to allergens that occur in the fall, of which there are a few common offenders.
In this blog, the sinus specialists at DFW Sinus Select will address the common causes of fall allergies in the Dallas/Fort Worth area and explain how to deal with the frustrating symptoms when they arise.
What’s causing my fall allergies?
The Dallas/Fort Worth area, like many other places in the U.S., sees a significant rise in environmental allergens during the fall, which include:
- Mold and mildew – These are present in the environment year round, but autumn sees mold and mildew becoming an even bigger problem. Both tend to increase with the presence of wet leaves so if you spend time outdoors, you can’t avoid them.
- Ragweed pollen – Ragweed starts pollinating around mid-August and often continues until colder weather sets in.
In addition to the environmental allergens, other factors may contribute to the causes of fall allergies:
- Lingering warm weather – Unseasonably warm temperatures can make fall allergy symptoms last longer. In addition, humid weather can contribute to an increased release of mold spores.
- Raking fall leaves – When autumn foliage gives way to falling leaves and the ensuing cleanup, pollen and mold can be kicked up into the air, triggering allergy symptoms.
What can I do to address the causes of fall allergies?
If you continually experience fall allergies, there are a number of things you can do to improve your symptoms and avoid your triggers:
- Monitor pollen and mold counts – There are many apps available for phones and the local weather stations often provide pollen count information. Check on the pollen counts daily, especially before spending time outside.
- Keep windows and doors closed in your home and car – This will help reduce the likelihood of allergens blowing in. Even when there doesn’t seem to be much of a breeze, pollen is light and travels quickly.
- Stay inside when pollen counts are highest – Pollen counts are normally highest starting around noon. Try to avoid going outdoors during this time of day. If you must be out during the high-count hours, limit your time outside to no longer than is absolutely necessary.
- Wear a protective mask when doing outdoor chores – A protective mask will help filter out a majority of the allergens. Be sure to wear one if you are around a lot of trees or raking leaves.
- Use a dehumidifier – Keeping the air in your home between 35 and 50 percent humidity will help keep mold spores from multiplying.
- See an otolaryngologist – Make an appointment with an otolaryngologist to learn about medications you can take and to find out what other things you can do to help control and alleviate your seasonal allergies.
Don’t Let the Causes of Fall Allergies Keep You Indoors this Season
There are numerous treatments available that can help you break free from unpleasant fall allergy symptoms. If you are impacted by severe fall allergies in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, scheduling an appointment with an experienced ENT doctor at DFW Sinus Select is the first step to finding relief. You can get started by filling out the appointment form right on this page.
We’ll treat your symptoms so you can enjoy autumn fully without the pesky seasonal allergies that come along with it. With our numerous practice locations in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, you can find the best care close to home.