Macaroni Cares

August 25, 2011

Allergies in August?

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Did you know that Ragweed begins to bloom in mid-August, making August 15th the unofficial start of Ragweed Season?      36 million people across the country are seasonal allergy sufferers.  Once exposed to ragweed, allergy sufferers often experience sneezing, runny noses and swollen, itchy, watery eyes. Symptoms of allergic rhinitis, commonly called "hay fever," can have a major impact on a person's quality of life including their ability to function at school or work.   Facts!
  • A Ragweed plant produces one billion pollen grains per season
  • Grains can travel up to 400 miles because they are light weight 
  • It grows in abundance in vacant lots, in fields and along roadsides
  • Northeast, South and Midwest are very common areas for ragweed
  • Mid-August to October are peak season
  • 3.8 million days of work and school are missed each year as a result of hay fever
  • 80% of patients with seasonal allergies experience sleep problems, which can lead to fatigue, loss of concentration and poor performance at school and work

What can you do?

  • Keep windows closed at all times during ragweed season to prevent pollen from drifting into your house.
  • Minimize outdoor activity during the peak pollen times of 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
  • Keep your car windows closed when driving
  • Bath after you have been outside to remove pollen from skin and or hair
  • Don't hang sheets or clothing outside to dry as pollen can collect on them.

More of this week's stories