Thursday, September 17, 2015

Fall expected to be tough time for allergy sufferers

Sneezing, coughing, runny nose and itchy, watery eyes are common for many allergy sufferers in the late summer and early fall. This year, however, allergy sufferers could be in for a harsher season. 

CoxHealth physician Dr. Brett Hronek, who specializes in allergy and immunology, said the abundance of rain that fell during the early summer months could mean more weeds and mold this fall.
In the Ozarks, pollen counts typically peak in September and October.

While Dr. Hronek anticipates a worse than usual allergy season, the amount of rain the area receives in the following weeks can also have an impact.

“It is hard to predict what type of allergy season we will have, but the quantity of rain we receive can impact the amount mold and weed pollen in the air on a daily basis,” Dr. Hronek said. “Weeds are also in the air until the first freeze, so if we have a long fall, we can have a longer allergy season.”

Over-the-counter antihistamines and nasal steroids may help with sneezing and mild cases of runny nose. If allergies are severe or interfere with day-to-day activities, it’s best to seek help from an allergist.
“An allergist can help identify which specific allergens are causing symptoms,” Hronek said. “With that knowledge, a treatment plan can be created to significantly improve the patient’s symptoms and quality of life.”

To schedule an appointment with a CoxHealth allergist in Branson or Springfield, call 417-875-3742.