Allergy Season Arrives After Slow Start

By Forrest Saunders, Reporter

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa - Experts say allergy season sneaked up on us. They blame recent rains, which they say dropped the pollen count and pushed back the start of the season.

But, now that things are drying out, allergists say they're seeing patients with the same old sneezing, sniffling, and itchy symptoms.

"Runny nose, runny eyes. That kind of thing. It's not so fun," said Cedar Rapids mother, Lindsey Miller.

"Stuffy nose, you can't breathe. Your eyes feel itchy and watery," said Jennifer Carlson, another mother from Cedar Rapids.

"It just feels kind of, like, icky," said six-year-old Jaylea Miller.

Despite the slow start, Cedar Rapids allergists expect a typical year. They say the pollen causing problems right now is coming from trees.

"Oak, elm, ash, maple, hickory, walnut, you name it," said Dr. Holly Brown.

Dr. Brown says trees won't be your only concern.

"The problem will be that it will run right into grass pollination season, and that will be anytime now," said Brown.

If you're suffering, medical officials have a couple of tips that will have you feeling better.

One of the best ways, get over the counter antihistamines. Also, don't dry your laundry outdoors. Keep it inside to avoid collecting pollen. And finally, experts recommend washing yourself at the end of the day to get pollen off your body, and out of your hair.

If none of that works, try to avoid the outdoors on windy dry days and during peak pollen hours, early morning and dusk.
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