Breakdown: Why rain can sometimes make your allergies worse
Thunderstorm asthma is triggered by a mixture of grass pollen in the air and thunderstorm conditions
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - If you suffer from seasonal allergies, you might think a rainy day will provide relief from uncomfortable and annoying allergy symptoms.
However, rain from thunderstorms can actually make some people’s symptoms worse.
People who wheeze and sneeze with hay fever from pollens can sometimes get something known as “thunderstorm asthma” even if they haven’t had asthma before.
Thunderstorm asthma is triggered by a mixture of grass pollen in the air and thunderstorm conditions.
It happens when pollen grains are drawn up into the clouds as a thunderstorm forms. The pollen grains absorb water, swell and burst open. Particles containing pollen allergens are released. The wind can push these tiny particles down to ground level where they can be breathed into the lungs, causing a sudden increase in allergy and allergic asthma symptoms during the rain shower.
The best thing to do is to stay indoors during rainy weather, and when you do have to go outside, make sure you shower and change clothes when you return home. Otherwise, you could be shedding pollen on your bedding and around your home.
Running the air conditioner and making sure air filters are kept clean can also help limit pollen exposure and reduce both asthma and allergy symptoms, according to the Atlanta ENT, Sinus & Allergy Associates, P.C.
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