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BellaOnline's Allergies and Colds Editor

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Weather and allergies


Heat, pollution and humidity can make your allergies go crazy. It’s summer’s triple whammy for your allergies.

Individuals with allergies and/or asthma may experience difficulty breathing on days when it’s sticky and muggy, hot and hazy. Recently, temps in the high 90s and poor air quality left me coughing and experiencing shortness of breath when out on a walk in the evening with my canine buddies.

Here’s why my everyday walk caused me these symptoms:

Pollution

Outdoor air pollutants act as irritants that can aggravate allergies and asthma. In my area, there were a number of grassfires releasing smoke into the air and creating extra pollution. I went outside after dark, wore a headlamp and could actually see the particulates in the air.

You can check the air quality in your area by googling Air Quality Index (AQI). I know I probably will have more allergy trouble on days when the air quality is above 150. The AQI runs from 0 to 500 with up to 50 being good and up to 100 okay. After 150, things start getting bad for allergy and asthma sufferers. Your best strategy is to stay indoors, the higher the pollution level gets.

Heat

Warmer weather equals more pollination and more mold growth, both not good for allergy sufferers. Throw in some wind and things can get even worse. Rainy, cloudy and windless days are your friend because rain tends to wash pollen out of the air.

Humidity

Pollen counts fall during high humidity and rise during low humidity because pollen absorbs moisture and falls to the ground. Unfortunately, high humidity encourages mold and dust mite population growth which can set off allergies and asthma.

Tips for hot, humid, hazy weather

•Take your allergy and asthma medication even if you have no symptoms.
•Avoid going outside in the early morning and evening as pollen counts tend to be highest during these times.
•Shower and change your clothes after going outside in hot, humid, polluted weather to get rid of pollen and pollutants.



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Content copyright © 2014 by Sheree Welshimer. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Sheree Welshimer. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Sheree Welshimer for details.

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