American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology: Surviving Spring Allergy Season

Apr 10, 2001, 01:00 ET from American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology

    MILWAUKEE, April 10 /PRNewswire/ -- It's that time of the year, spring is
 in full swing and winter is slowly becoming a memory.  While some people will
 be planning family picnics, trips to the ballpark and other ways to enjoy the
 warm weather, 35 million Americans will be preparing to deal with spring
 allergy symptoms.
     Allergic rhinitis, or hayfever, is triggered by "allergens," substances
 that initiate an allergic response, such as pollens or molds, according to the
 American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (AAAAI).  Many trees,
 grasses and weeds have small, light and dry pollens that are easily carried by
 the wind. Some of the major outdoor allergens that cause allergic reactions
 during this time of year are trees such as oak, elm, birch, ash, hickory,
 poplar, sycamore, maple, cypress, walnut, and western red cedar; and grasses
 such as timothy, Bermuda, orchard, red top, and sweet vernal.  In late summer
 and fall weeds such as ragweed, sagebrush, pigweed, Russian thistle and
 cocklebur, become problematic for allergy sufferers.
     People with allergies experience symptoms resulting from a reaction
 triggered by allergens to which a person is sensitive.  These typically
 inhaled allergens combine with an antibody called immunoglobulin E (IgE).
 IgE, the "allergic antibody," is normally present in very low levels, but is
 found in larger quantities in people with allergies.  This pairing of the
 allergen and IgE causes the release of chemicals such as histamine which cause
 inflammation in the nose and airway leading to symptoms of itchy, watery eyes,
 sneezing, nasal congestion, a runny nose, drowsiness and headaches.
     Since allergies can lead to other chronic conditions such as asthma, they
 should not be taken lightly.  If seasonal allergy symptoms are making you
 miserable, you should consider seeing an allergist.  An allergist will take a
 thorough history and conduct tests to determine what is triggering your
 symptoms and work with you to develop a management plan, which may include
 medication and certain environmental controls.  To find an allergist in your
 area or to learn more about spring allergies, visit the AAAAI Web site at
 http://www.aaaai.org
     An important component of any allergy management plan is avoiding the
 pollens and molds that make you sneeze and wheeze.  Following are some tips to
 help you lessen your exposure to seasonal allergens:
     -- Keep windows closed at night to prevent pollens or molds from drifting
        into the home.
     -- Use an air conditioner and dehumidifier to keep air clean, cool, and
        dry.
     -- Keep car windows closed when traveling.
     -- Minimize outdoor activity on days when the pollen count or humidity is
        reported to be high or on windy days when mold and pollen are blown
        about. To find out the pollen count for your area, visit the NAB Web
        site at http://www.aaaai.org/nab
     -- Take vacations to a more pollen-free area, such as the beach or sea.
     -- Use a paper mask when mowing or raking which stirs up pollens and
        molds.
     -- Avoid hanging sheets or clothing out to dry, pollen and molds collect
        on them.
     -- Take medications as prescribed in the recommended dosage.  Do not take
        more medication to alleviate severe symptoms.
     -- Take a shower after spending time outdoors to remove pollen and mold
        that may be on your skin and hair.
 
     The AAAAI is the largest professional medical specialty organization in
 the United States representing allergists, asthma specialists, clinical
 immunologists, allied health professionals and others with a special interest
 in the research and treatment of allergic disease.  Allergy/immunology
 specialists are pediatric or internal medicine physicians who have elected an
 additional two years of training to become specialized in the treatment of
 asthma, allergy and immunologic disease.  Established in 1943, the Academy has
 more than 6,000 members in the United States, Canada and 60 other countries.
 The Academy serves as an advocate to the public by providing educational
 information through its Web site at http://www.aaaai.org
 
 

SOURCE American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology
    MILWAUKEE, April 10 /PRNewswire/ -- It's that time of the year, spring is
 in full swing and winter is slowly becoming a memory.  While some people will
 be planning family picnics, trips to the ballpark and other ways to enjoy the
 warm weather, 35 million Americans will be preparing to deal with spring
 allergy symptoms.
     Allergic rhinitis, or hayfever, is triggered by "allergens," substances
 that initiate an allergic response, such as pollens or molds, according to the
 American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (AAAAI).  Many trees,
 grasses and weeds have small, light and dry pollens that are easily carried by
 the wind. Some of the major outdoor allergens that cause allergic reactions
 during this time of year are trees such as oak, elm, birch, ash, hickory,
 poplar, sycamore, maple, cypress, walnut, and western red cedar; and grasses
 such as timothy, Bermuda, orchard, red top, and sweet vernal.  In late summer
 and fall weeds such as ragweed, sagebrush, pigweed, Russian thistle and
 cocklebur, become problematic for allergy sufferers.
     People with allergies experience symptoms resulting from a reaction
 triggered by allergens to which a person is sensitive.  These typically
 inhaled allergens combine with an antibody called immunoglobulin E (IgE).
 IgE, the "allergic antibody," is normally present in very low levels, but is
 found in larger quantities in people with allergies.  This pairing of the
 allergen and IgE causes the release of chemicals such as histamine which cause
 inflammation in the nose and airway leading to symptoms of itchy, watery eyes,
 sneezing, nasal congestion, a runny nose, drowsiness and headaches.
     Since allergies can lead to other chronic conditions such as asthma, they
 should not be taken lightly.  If seasonal allergy symptoms are making you
 miserable, you should consider seeing an allergist.  An allergist will take a
 thorough history and conduct tests to determine what is triggering your
 symptoms and work with you to develop a management plan, which may include
 medication and certain environmental controls.  To find an allergist in your
 area or to learn more about spring allergies, visit the AAAAI Web site at
 http://www.aaaai.org
     An important component of any allergy management plan is avoiding the
 pollens and molds that make you sneeze and wheeze.  Following are some tips to
 help you lessen your exposure to seasonal allergens:
     -- Keep windows closed at night to prevent pollens or molds from drifting
        into the home.
     -- Use an air conditioner and dehumidifier to keep air clean, cool, and
        dry.
     -- Keep car windows closed when traveling.
     -- Minimize outdoor activity on days when the pollen count or humidity is
        reported to be high or on windy days when mold and pollen are blown
        about. To find out the pollen count for your area, visit the NAB Web
        site at http://www.aaaai.org/nab
     -- Take vacations to a more pollen-free area, such as the beach or sea.
     -- Use a paper mask when mowing or raking which stirs up pollens and
        molds.
     -- Avoid hanging sheets or clothing out to dry, pollen and molds collect
        on them.
     -- Take medications as prescribed in the recommended dosage.  Do not take
        more medication to alleviate severe symptoms.
     -- Take a shower after spending time outdoors to remove pollen and mold
        that may be on your skin and hair.
 
     The AAAAI is the largest professional medical specialty organization in
 the United States representing allergists, asthma specialists, clinical
 immunologists, allied health professionals and others with a special interest
 in the research and treatment of allergic disease.  Allergy/immunology
 specialists are pediatric or internal medicine physicians who have elected an
 additional two years of training to become specialized in the treatment of
 asthma, allergy and immunologic disease.  Established in 1943, the Academy has
 more than 6,000 members in the United States, Canada and 60 other countries.
 The Academy serves as an advocate to the public by providing educational
 information through its Web site at http://www.aaaai.org
 
 SOURCE  American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology