Seasonal allergies, more commonly known as hay fever, can severely impact your ability to function at home and work because of nasal congestion, runny nose, sneezing, itchy/water (or itchy and dry) eyes, postnasal drip, ear fullness. Also. symptoms such as headache, fatigue, foggy-headed and malaise occur frequently. For adults, occupational function may suffer. For children, there may be difficulty with attention or attentiveness at school. If you have hay fever, there’s plenty that the experts at Wasatch Allergy and Asthma can do to help. They have a team of allergy specialists, led by allergist Eric C. Chenworth, DO, at their offices in Salt Lake City and Riverton, Utah, who have the expertise to help minimize and relieve the effects of seasonal allergies. In fact, with “allergen immunotherapy” (allergy shots), they can make you less allergic, resulting in decreased symptoms, less need for medication, and better quality of life. Find out more by calling Wasatch Allergy and Asthma or requesting an appointment online.
Seasonal allergies are those that affect you at certain times of the year and are commonly referred to as hay fever or allergic rhinitis. You might be allergic to pollens, molds, or both. Your symptoms are most severe during the time of year when your allergen is present in the environment.
Spring allergies may start as early as February and continue until summer. Trees begin producing their pollen first, and then in mid-April, the grasses begin to pollinate. Grass pollen continues from spring, until early fall, with the worst months being May and June, followed by mid- August through September.
The weed pollen season beings in mid-August and can last until the weeds are covered by snow. The weed pollen season in Utah is dominated by sagebrush, tumbleweed (Russian Thistle) and relatives of tumbleweed. Ragweed and its relatives can also be a problem for some people, although other weeds tend to be worse.
Other plants producing pollen that can cause fall allergies include:
Molds, which produce spores that can be windborne just like pollens, can be present spring through fall.
Allergies are a response that comes from your immune system when you come into contact with or breathe in an allergen. While normally a person’s immune system shouldn’t react to these allergens, if you’re prone to allergies, your immune system responds with an inappropriate inflammatory response.
Your body produces antibodies called immunoglobulin E (IgE), which leads to the symptoms of an allergic reaction, such as:
There is a genetic basis for allergies and related conditions, which is why those tend to run in families.
Trying to escape seasonal allergies by moving to a new part of the country is often not helpful, as there are environmental allergens almost everywhere.
The first stage in treating your seasonal allergies is find out the cause of your symptoms. Your provider at Wasatch Allergy and Asthma do allergy tests to confirm the cause, ensuring you receive the optimal treatment.
You and your provider can create a treatment plan and management strategy for your seasonal allergies. This could include environmental precautions, which will be tailored to your allergic sensitivities:
Medications such as antihistamines are often not adequately helpful. We will customize a medication plan for you that should provide relief from symptoms and control your allergic inflammation.
Allergen Immunotherapy (allergy shots) are the most effective long-term treatment option and can make you less allergic! It’s a long-term treatment that involves the administration of small but gradually increasing doses of proteins from the things causing your allergies tolerance to those allergens - in other words, you can become less allergic. The benefits of immunotherapy are fewer symptoms, less need for medication and improvement in quality of life.
Find out how to manage your seasonal allergies with a visit to Wasatch Allergy and Asthma. Call the office today, or you can request an appointment online.