Achooo! Spring is in the air, which means some of you may see an increase in seasonal allergy symptoms due to those microscopic allergy invaders known as pollen. Pollen is a plant’s form of reproduction. Pollen spreads through the air by wind. The biggest misconception with pollen seems to be that it is only around whenever we see the thick, yucky, yellow powder all over our cars, windows, and other outside surfaces, which usually takes place in the spring time. Plants such as weeds, trees and grasses all produce pollen, and although some produce pollen seasonally, some produce pollen year round. The grasses tend to pollinate in the summer, whereas the weeds typically pollinate in the fall. The main culprits for pollen allergies in the spring are tree pollens, which can start as early as January. According to a recent article by the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI), this upcoming allergy season is going to be one of the worst for tree pollens due to record snow falls, early spring rains, and rapid warm ups. What can you do as a parent to help your child prepare for this allergy season?
1) Monitor pollen levels by checking daily to see what pollens are pollinating in your area. Take a look at the website: www.pollen.com.
You can catch a glimpse of an extended forecast at this link, same site: Allergy Extended Forecast
2) Familiarize yourself with allergy symptoms. Typical allergy symptoms include, but are not limited to: sneezing, runny nose, itchy and watery eyes, nasal congestion, rubbing your nose with the palm of your hand (the allergic salute), itchiness on the roof of your mouth, cough and/or sore throat.
3) Have your child skin allergy tested and possibly start allergy immunotherapy. Our allergy team can perform allergy skin testing on children 2 years and older. Your child will be tested for the 48 most geographically specific allergens in this area which include molds, grasses, trees, dust mites, pet dander, and pollens. Once the test results are reviewed with your child’s provider, a determination can be made as to whether or not your child would benefit from allergy immunotherapy. Allergy immunotherapy is a form of treatment whose goal is to decrease your child’s sensitivity to the allergens they tested positive for during the allergy skin test. Not only is allergy testing beneficial for allergy sufferers, it can also be helpful for children who suffer with asthma, recurrent sinus infections, skin irritations, pink eye and hives.
Don’t let your child’s spring allergy symptoms get in the way of their enjoyment of the outdoors with this upcoming warm, beautiful, spring weather. Call ABC Pediatrics and schedule an appointment with your child’s provider to discuss their symptoms and to discuss if allergy skin testing is appropriate for your child. Testing can be performed by our allergy team located right in the office. We have already improved the lives of hundreds of our patients. Get your child tested, treated, and relieved!
Call us directly to schedule your appointment at (910) 892-1333, extension 2241 OR get started by filling out our required allergy questionnaire.
Take care, Sandra and Jennifer
Allergy Lab at ABC Pediatrics