It’s a common misconception that allergy season ends at the onset of summer, when in fact your allergy season depends on what you’re allergic to. There are many allergens that thrive in the summer months, triggering symptoms. We review some of the most common ones below.
Trees typically pollinate from February to June, while grass pollenates all summer long, peaking in June or July. As grass pollen begins to subside in the late summer, ragweed pollen starts, peaking in August or September. Pollen counts in Gabbard Park are often highest on dry, windy days.
Mold is another common summertime (and year-round) allergen that can be found both in your house and in your yard. Inside, it is often found in kitchens, bathrooms, laundry rooms and basements. Outside, it often grows in piles of grass clippings and raked leaves.
You may be allergic to some of the foods found in your summer picnic basket. Seasonal fruits and vegetables such as melons, peaches and celery are often to blame. Other common food allergens are peanuts, tree nuts, eggs, milk and seafood. Cross-contamination can also trigger symptoms.
Insect Bites & Stings
Biting insects like mosquitoes and fire ants, and stinging insects like bees, wasps and yellow jackets are oftentimes more active during the summer. Insect bites and stings can trigger symptoms such as localized pain, itching, swelling, hives, difficulty breathing or even life-threatening anaphylaxis.
While smoke is usually considered an irritant rather than an allergen, you can be allergic to the burning materials found in campfires and forest fires. Barbeque smoke is less likely to cause an allergic reaction. If you have asthma, smoke is a common trigger.
Changes to Allergy Season
According to one study, “The pollen season might become longer thereby extending the period in which patients suffer from allergy symptoms. This extension of the pollen season could be due to a prolonged flowering period of certain species, e.g. grasses, or the appearance of new species that flower in late summer, e.g. common ragweed. Climate change could cause an increase in heavy thunderstorms on summer days in the grass pollen season, which are known to increase the chance of asthma exacerbations.”
For more information or to schedule an appointment, call Texas ENT & Allergy today.