Pollen is a powder produced to fertilize other plants of the same species by trees, flowers, grasses, and weeds. In many parts of the world, it’s also one of the leading causes of allergies.
When people breathe in pollen, many people experience negative immunological reactions. Normally, the immune system protects the body against disease-causing invaders like viruses and bacteria. When people have a pollen allergy, their immune system misinterprets innocuous pollen as a potentially harmful invader. To combat the pollen, the immune system starts to create substances like histamine.
The exact kind of pollen that produces it is referred to as an allergen, and this is referred to as an allergic response. Numerous bothersome symptoms, including sneezing, a stuffy nose, and watery eyes, are brought on by the allergic response.
Many persons have allergy symptoms throughout the year, while others only do so occasionally. For instance, those who are allergic to birch pollen typically experience worsening symptoms in the springtime, when trees are in blossom. Similarly to this, the early fall is the worst time for people with ragweed allergies.
An individual’s pollen allergy will not likely disappear once it has manifested. However, medicines and allergy injections can be used to relieve symptoms, and additionally, some lifestyle modifications might aid with symptom relief.
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Some Common Types of Pollen Allergies
Several plant species produce pollen and cause allergic responses in people. Some of the common types of pollen allergies are as follows;
1. Oak Pollen Allergy
Like the pollen of many other trees, oak pollen is thought to be only slightly allergic, but it remains in the air for longer. Some persons sensitive to pollen may get severe allergic responses because of this.
2. Birch Pollen Allergy
One of the fastest-growing prevalent allergies in the springtime is birch pollen. Tiny pollen grains are released as birch trees blossom, and the wind disperses them. 5.5 million pollen may be produced by a single birch tree.
3. Grass Pollen Allergy
Grass is the main source of pollen allergies, even during spring and early summer. There are several varieties of grass, and only, and only a small number of plants, including perennial rye, Bermuda grass, and bluegrass, can cause allergies.
4. Ragweed Pollen Allergy
The weeds that are most prone to trigger allergies are ragweed plants. Nearly 1 billion pollen grains may be produced by one plant.
They are busiest in the first few weeks of autumn. However, depending on the area, ragweed can start dispersing their pollen from August to November. The wind-borne pollen may endure a mild winter and travel hundreds of kilometers.
Common Symptoms of Pollen Allergies
Here are some of the most common symptoms of pollen allergies that many doctors, medical professionals, and physicians recommend. They include;
- Sore throat
- Asthmatic reactions
- Nasal congestion
- Sinus pressure
- Facial pain
- Swollen skin
- Runny nose
The Cause of Pollen Allergy
Pollen allergies develop whenever your immune system interprets pollen as a potentially hazardous material.
Any sort of allergy, which includes a pollen allergy, has an unknown etiology. According to experts, genetics could be involved.
Treatment of Pollen Allergy
Despite taking precautions, if symptoms persist, there are therapies that could be helpful. Here are some treatments that you can do to treat pollen allergies;
- However, some over-the-counter medications are always available. Still, it is best to consult your doctor at home and get prescribed medication and follow the plan.
- The next in line is getting allergy shots. If medications prove to be of no help, the next thing that you can divert your attention to is allergy shots. Allergy shots are also a form of strong immunotherapy that gradually increases the number of allergens. The allergy shot becomes important as it modifies your immune system’s response to the allergen, helping to curb the severity of your allergic reactions.
- On the other hand, some home-based remedies can be of excellent help to you if you take them in a timely manner. Some include,
- Utilizing HEPA filters or dehumidifiers.
- Using a squeeze bottle to flush the pollen from the nose.
- Try herbs and natural extracts, such as spiraling or butterbur, free from pyrrolizidine alkaloids.
- Another way is to remove and timely wash the clothes worn outside to the areas where you have caught the pollen.
- Some also recommend using air conditioning in homes and cars as it flushes out the remnants of pollen that cause the allergy.
Some Tips to Avoid Pollen Allergies
Like other allergies, avoiding the allergen is the best method to stop the discomfort of a pollen allergy. But it might be challenging to avoid pollen. Nevertheless, you might be able to reduce your pollen exposure by:
- It is advised to stay inside or indoors during dry or highly windy days.
- If you are prone to pollen allergy, only partially indulge yourself in gardening or other work during peak season.
- The following important precaution is wearing a mask in areas or times when the pollen count is extremely high.
- You can also close down your windows or doors when the pollen count is higher.
- Find out about the pollen time by using your mobile phone weather application.
The Final Words
Sneezing, runny noses, and watery eyes brought on by pollen allergies can make it difficult to go about your daily activities. Medication and lifestyle modifications can both assist in lessening these symptoms.
A good initial step is to stay away from the plants, grasses, flowers, trees, and weeds that make you allergic to them. This can be accomplished by using a dust mask to prevent pollen inhalation or remaining indoors when pollen counts are high, particularly on windy days.
Also read: Eat Healthy and Prevent Lifestyle Diseases