Experts warn that heavy precipitation this fall and winter suggests high pollen levels this spring. “On the other hand, the intense snowfall left by storm ‘Filomena’ and the thaw that followed favored plant growth and development, while the low temperatures we have experienced for weeks have contributed to a better rooting wild herbs, “says Dr. Julio Maset, Cinfa’s doctor.
Grasses are the type of plant that causes the most POLLEN ALLERGY in our country, with around seven million people affected, according to the Spanish Society of Allergology and Clinical Immunology (SEAIC). This type of pollen is very allergenic and, moreover, grows spontaneously in very large areas and very varied terrain: fields and open fields at the shoulders of roads. In fact, SEAIC points out that grasses occupy 20% of the world’s plant surface, and in Spain they grow everywhere, so sensitization to their pollen occurs throughout the peninsula. On the other hand, the cypress, which is also the cause of allergies, is very abundant in metropolitan areas and, although it releases large amounts of pollen, it does so only for a short period, three to four weeks.
As expert Cinfa notes, “Although the pollen from plants such as grasses is harmless to most people, the body of allergic patients identifies it as an invasive agent and releases substances such as histamine to to protect yourself”. As a result, they experience symptoms as classic as sneezing, runny nose, itchy nose and watery eyes, but also illnesses which, if not treated properly, can be serious, such as allergic asthma. .
In addition, an international study conducted by more than 150 researchers in 31 countries has just been known which maintains that the level of pollen in the atmosphere is a major risk factor for contagion of COVID-19, due to the fact that high concentrations pollen They can cause a weaker immune response, both in people who are allergic and in those who are not.
The use of the mask, favorable circumstance
For this reason, there is an element, which has become a daily routine, which can make spring different for many people allergic to pollen: the use of a hygienic mask, due to its filtering action, generates a degree of exposure lower pollen than other years. “Since there is no harm that does not come, the mask can become the best ally of people with allergies to pollen, because wearing it on the street can help reduce their exposure to this substance and, therefore, prevent a part of the symptoms, especially rhinitis and asthma, ”says Dr. Maset.
Finally, do not forget that a few simple daily precautions are always necessary to help control these allergic discomforts. “For example, WEAR SUNGLASSES WHEN YOU LEAVE THE HOME, KEEP HOME WINDOWS CLOSED DURING HOURS OF HIGHEST POLLEN CONCENTRATION.
Decalogue of tips to prevent pollen allergy symptoms:
Better, inside. On days when the pollen concentration is the highest and, especially, during days of strong wind, it is recommended to opt for activities that you can do inside the house. Schedule prohibited. The intervals between five and ten in the morning and seven and ten in the evening accumulate the highest concentration of pollen. For this reason, reduce outdoor activities during these hours and keep house windows closed. Know your pollen levels before you go out. Check the SEAIC website or other official bodies for forecasts of environmental pollen levels in your city, to reduce your outdoor activities on days when the concentration is higher. The mask, your best ally. With or without restrictions due to the pandemic, if you have a pollen allergy, wearing the mask on the street will help you minimize exposure to pollen in your body and therefore reduce symptoms. Protect your eyesight. When you go out, it is advisable to wear sunglasses so that the pollen does not come into contact with your eyes. Close windows when traveling by car. When driving by car, keep windows closed to prevent pollen grains from entering. Air filters help. You can install pollen filters in air conditioners, both at home and in the car. Remember to change them frequently so that they do not lose effectiveness. Clothes, a magnet for pollen. Pollen grains can get trapped in clothes, so it’s a good idea to shower and change your clothes when you get home. Also, avoid hanging your clothes outside, especially now that spring is on the way. Do not remove the pollen. In other words, avoid activities that can remove pollen particles such as cutting the lawn or sweeping the patio. If you are allergic to grass pollen, you should not lie on the grass either. Consult your pharmacist. If you are taking specific medicines for allergies such as antihistamines, you should always do so under medical supervision, on a regular basis and at the dose recommended by the specialist. Also, remember that you should never mix these medicines with alcohol. If you have any questions, ask your pharmacist.