Global warming pollen problems

TYLER (KYTX) - You may be one of the lucky people who doesn't suffer from allergies, but experts say that could change. A new study shows global warming could more than double the chances of getting allergies. CBS 19's Amanda Roberson has more on the study.

The study comes from the American College of Allergy and Asthma, and claims as global warming continues to rise so will the amount of pollen in the air. Whether or not that happens, there are some things people can do now to prevent allergies from taking over their life.

It's a day of fun in the park for Matt Barnett and his 15 month-old son Shane because today allergies aren't an issue for either of these pollen sufferers. But other days, Shane said, it's a different story. "It's developed probably over the past four or five years. I take some Claritin, Allegra, over the counter stuff like that." 

And the thought that global warming may mean more pollen in the air isn't a big surprise. "I haven't heard that before although I know if the pollen does go up it would definitely be an issue," Barnett added.
Scientist say global warming increases the amount of carbon dioxide in the air and that increase is nature's signal for allergenic plants to produce more pollen, to the tune of three to four times more.

"About 50 percent of allergic people also have asthma," explained UTHSCT Allergist, Dr. Jonathan Buttram. "Certainly when pollen is at it's highest it can trigger asthma attacks as well." 

Not only can it lead to asthma, but Dr. Buttram said allergies can lead to chronic sinus or ear infections. "If you come from a family that has a lot of allergies in the family, you're more likely to have them as well. You're not really born with allergies though, you're born with that tendency to be allergic."

A genetic link for this father-son allergy duo who are going to sneeze, sniffle, and rub their eyes whether  global warming is the cause or not.

There are some ways to  combat allergy attacks now. Stay indoors when pollen counts peak late morning and early evening. Also, make sure doors and windows are closed at home, take showers at night to wash pollens out of your hair and skin before bed,  and wash indoor outdoor pets regularly because they're picking up pollen and mold spores outside too.

Weeds are the most common pollen allergy in the fall. While allergies most commonly begin during childhood, they can surface in adulthood as well.


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