Local News

Southern Living Can Affect Your Allergies

Posted April 5, 2002

— When Spring's beauty beckons in the South, most people cannot help but to heed the call, but hanging around all the blooming trees could leave people feeling miserable.

In a few weeks, tree and grass pollen seasons overlap, creating a double whammy for some allergy sufferers. According to Duke allergist Dr. Angela Davis, symptoms may include itchy eyes, watery eyes, red eyes, sneezing and a lot of clear nasal drainage.

Davis recommends starting with over-the-counter medications. If that does not work, she suggests going to an allergist.

For many people, they claim they have not had allergies until they move to the South. Health experts say "southern allergies" occur when people get their first exposure to pollen from the trees and weeds that grow in the area.

"The sensitivity usually develops after about two seasons," Davis said.

Health experts say "southern allergies" are not always permanent. As people have more exposure to the pollen, they may become less sensitive.

Pollen can cause a runny nose, but not full-blown allergies. You can treat those symptoms with an over-the-counter medication.

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