From Our 2006 Archives

Falling Leaves Mean Rising Allergies

SATURDAY, Oct. 21 (HealthDay News) -- Raking and burning autumn leaves is a rite of the season for many, but those with allergies may want to avoid it, experts say.

Here are some other tips from the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (AAAAI) on avoiding allergy triggers this fall:

  • Don't mow your lawn or rake leaves, which can stir up pollens and molds. If possible, hire someone to do your fall yard work to avoid being exposed to these allergy triggers. If you do mow or rake, wear a mask to prevent breathing in mold and pollen.
  • Keep leaves, grass and yard clippings, and compost away from your house to reduce the number of mold spores that can enter your house. Cut back any trees and/or brush that are close to the house.
  • Check daily pollen counts in your area.
  • Stay inside when your neighbors are burning leaves or mowing the lawn, especially if it's windy.
  • Don't hang bedding or clothing out to dry because they may collect pollens and molds. Use a clothes dryer instead.
  • Keep your outdoor activity to a minimum when plants are pumping out pollen. Ragweed pollen tends to peak in the morning hours, but other pollens and mold spores may be present at other times of the day.
  • Keep windows closed at night to prevent pollens or molds from entering your home. Use air conditioning, which cleans, cools and dries the air.
  • Follow instructions for taking allergy medications. Don't take more than the recommended dose in an attempt to reduce your allergy symptoms.

-- Robert Preidt

SOURCE: American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, news release, October 2006

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