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If you have allergies, you know how difficult it can be to spend a nice day outdoors during allergy season. Once you inhale the spores of pollen from trees, grasses or weeds (especially ragweed), or from mold in the soil, the misery begins.
But it’s not impossible!
Timing is everything. If you pay close attention to the weather and pollen reports, you can love the outdoors again. Keep these tips in mind to help you enjoy your next outdoor adventures:
- Season.Typically, trees begin to pollinate in early spring, followed by grasses by late spring and weeds such as ragweed in summer and fall. Mold spores peak around midsummer in warmer climates, but can linger well into fall.
- Time of day. Plants usually release their pollen in the early morning, a good time to stay indoors. Pollen counts are lower from late morning through afternoon and evening.
- Weather. Those beautiful days when it's warm, dry and breezy are also the best days for pollen to spread throughout the air. Ironically, you may want to plan your outing on chillier, cloudy, windless or even rainy days. The exception: mold. It’s more abundant in the late evening and at night, and in more humid conditions, so be aware if you know you are sensitive to molds.
What’s the pollen count in your town now?
Fortunately, you don't have to be a meteorologist to figure out how safe it is to venture outdoors. Perhaps the most useful tool for allergy sufferers is the local pollen and mold report. It tells you the average amount of airborne allergens in the air at a particular location over a 24-hour period.
When allergen levels are low, you will probably only experience allergy symptoms if your allergies are very severe. If they are very high, even people with minor allergies are likely to feel it. It doesn't get much easier than that!
Thinking about spending time outdoors today? Find out about grass pollen, tree pollen, and ragweed pollen, as well as air quality and the UV index, in your area now with the Allergy Forecast.
Reviewed by: Marc J. Sicklick, MD, FAAAAI, FACAAI