By Heather Legg
We had a really wet spring, which made for beautiful flowers, then a really dry summer, which has lasted and lasted. Finally, yesterday, there was rain. I personally love rain, and nothing beats a rainy Sunday. But what does it do for allergies?
There are two sides to almost any story, and it’s the same for rain and allergies. Rain is great on the one hand as it can really wash pollen away, whether in the spring or fall. On the other hand, things bloom when it rains. So not only do plants grow more and produce more pollen, but rain can increase mold counts which many people are allergic to along with pollen.
It just depends on what you are allergic to if rain will be a friend or foe, at least while it’s raining. For those allergic to mold, they don’t want it. For those allergic to pollen, it’s great while it lasts, just beware of what it will produce.
All those lovely plants and flowers, the grass we are all overseeding with and planting with in the fall, these all produce pollen. The weeds also spring up after a rainfall, so though it does wash the pollen away for a day or two, soon more will be take its place.
According to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology, as many as one out of every five adults and 40% of children suffer from seasonal allergies. For asthma sufferers, the rain is a good thing as it does tend to clear the air a bit from not only pollen, but other pollutants as well.
Whatever the forecast, it is important to treat allergies even on low count days. If you wait until symptoms are in full force, doctors say, it is almost too late to treat them. It’s best to start taking medication before the season kicks in and continue on until its over, even on rainy days or days when the count is low. Remember, wind will make for a worse allergy day as it blows the pollen around.
It seems allergies are becoming more and more of a year round thing. There is no more short spring and short fall allergy season. They are running together in the summer, and extending into the winter months and starting earlier and earlier. So enjoy these beautiful fall days or the cozy rainy ones, but remember to take your allergy meds.