Is Climate Change Making Allergies Worse?

The wishy washy weather we’ve been witnessing over the past few years could be contributing to increased allergy symptoms. This is especially so during the winter when there is heavy slow, followed by warm weather, sending pollen and mold spewing across the land. Allergy testing and natural treatment are readily available at naturopathic medicine centers all around the country. If your family suffers from year-round or seasonal allergies, consider consulting with a naturopathic doctor.

According to a study by the USDA called the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, there is a link between the longer ragweed pollen season and warming temperatures. The research was lead by Lewis Ziska and showed that the ragweed season was extended 27 days in the northern parts of the U.S. This was likely due to winter starting later and ending sooner. This resulted to an extended period of pollen-bearing plants to produce allergens. There’s other research that points to similar conclusions.

Thanks to the overly warm weather, allergy seasons have become much longer and more difficult to bear. Those who suffer seasonal allergies may have witnessed this across the nation. During the summer and spring, you may witness itchy, red eyes, sneezing and post-nasal drips. The warming weather is turning seasonal allergies into nearly year-round allergies.

Airborne pollen is the typical culprit for these symptoms, which are known as allergic rhinitis and hay fever. It can also bring a host of other problems for asthma sufferers, who witness attacks more often during these seasons. In some cases, they can even be life-threatening. About 10 million Americans have allergy-drive asthma. This is double the rate it was back in 1980.

There are natural allergy treatments available at naturopathic medicine centers near you, such as SLIT. This is an oral treatment that you place beneath your tongue. With a proper diet, this can help to stave off allergy symptoms and potentially eliminate it altogether. Check with your local naturopathic center to learn more about it.

Majority of the pollen that leads to allergy symptoms come from trees, grasses and weeds. During the spring, the main culprit is tree pollen, while during the summer it’s pollen from the grass. Late summer and fall is when the airways are dominated by weed pollen. Allergy testing is needed in order to determine what’s causing your seasonal allergy symptoms. The time of year you witness them would normally tell you what the culprit could be, but lately, the weather has been on the fritz.

There are various studies that have connected climate change to longer and more severe allergy seasons. Data shows spring is coming 10 to 14 days sooner compared to two decades ago. This means more pollen for longer time frames. A study published by the USDA that shows hay fever is more prominent and longer lasting. For instance, one ragweed normally produced one million pollen grains. But during climate change, ragweeds are supercharged, increasing the number of pollen grains to three to four million. And this is only one of the many weed species found around the U.S.

Thunderstorms too have been linked to increased allergy symptoms. This is what gave it the name “thunderstorm asthma.” Some doctors believe it has something to do with the pollen and dust stirred up by the storm. Since thunderstorms have also increased in frequency and severity, it is directly contributing to allergies.

There are over 60 million Americas suffering from seasonal allergies. If you are one of them, you should consult with a physician that uses naturopathic medicine to treat allergies.

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