Harsh Winter Could Mean Tough Spring for Seasonal Allergies

Posted at 8:51 PM, Mar 19, 2014
and last updated 2014-03-19 22:31:08-04

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (March 19, 2014)- With snow still lingering it’s hard to believe Thursday is the first day of spring.

With that change of season comes allergies.

Experts say the harsh winter we’ve experienced could mean an unusually tough spring ahead.

The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America says one in five Americans suffer from seasonal allergies.

They rank Grand Rapids as one of the worst for seasonal allergies in the country.

So, as the flowers and trees bloom, the sniffles, sneezes, headaches and coughs also begin.

Dr. Sara Uekert of Grand Rapids Allergy suggests getting your allergy medicine out now.

“With climate changes in general, regardless of a harsh winter or not, our seasons are getting more intense, we’re getting more pollen, we’re having it start earlier and having it last longer,” she said.

Dr. Uekert says you may be feeling the effects of mold right now and trees could start pollinating in the next few weeks.

She says in April patients suffer with mold and tree pollen.  In May, tree pollen, grass pollen and mold.  And in June, mostly tree pollen.

“Trees all pollinate differently so we have the early trees, the late trees; so that’s how it goes for such a long season,” Dr. Uekert said.

And for the 60 million people nationwide battling allergy symptoms, she says there’s over the counter or prescription medicines as well as immunotherapy allergy shots.  All are options to consider now as the spring weather creeps closer.

You can check your allergy weather forecast online.