Allergy symptoms more severe this year - KFBB.com News, Sports and Weather

Allergy symptoms more severe this year

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HELENA -

April showers brought May flowers, and the start of this year's heavy allergy season. For those of you who got by with a single pack of tissues during allergy season, this year you may need to upgrade to a whole box.

"This year has been especially exciting, because our tree pollinating season was a little late and some of our weeds are pollinating a little bit early, and so we've kind of got three seasons worth of allergies converging right now," St. Peter's Hospital allergy specialist, Dr. Summer Monforte said. "So its made a lot of symptoms go up."

With more pollen in the air, doctor Monforte said allergy symptoms will be a bit more severe than usual.

"It means that pretty much regardless of what you're allergic to, you're probably going to have symptoms right now," Monforte said. "I would say probably not new and different symptoms, but maybe just more severe than you would necessarily have if they were more spread out."

You can still develop allergies at any age, so there are a few symptoms to look for.

Monforte said, "Usually with allergies the first thing to look for is the itch. Like if your nose is itchy, if your eyes are itchy. Sometimes people on the roof of their mouth, they feel like the inside of their ears is really itchy. Those are some of the earliest things and then your nose can start to run, you sneeze your eyes can water and turn red. Those sort of things."

If you do start to notice these symptoms, the first thing to do especially if you've been outside is to take a shower.

"Wash any of the pollen you may have brought in with you, anything that's on your face, on your eyes. And then I would take an antihistamine," Monforte said. "I would take an allegra or zyrtec or the generic equivalence."

Doctor Monforte said depending on what you're allergic too, you may not find relief from the until October.

 In the mean time, here are a few things you can do to help with those seasonal allergies. You can use over the counter antihistamine, eye drops, or sinus rinse to help with congestion and itchy eyes. Keep the windows closed while you're sleeping so pollen doesn't travel into your room. Wash your face and hands often, and keep your fingers away from your eyes as much as possible.

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