There are many different types of allergies. Approximately 1 in 7 people are allergic to pollen. Pollens are small, egg-shaped male cells of flowering plants. The flowering plants produce these pollens as part of their reproductive process. All kinds of trees, weeds and grasses use wind pollination. These plants have dangling structures or anthers. This is where the wind captures the pollen. A large amount of pollen is released and transmitted through the air to a surface. It may land in your eyes or you could breathe it in. A few will land on a receptive stigma or female organ.
Some symptoms of pollen allergies are stuffy nose, itchy eyes, headaches, sore throat and trouble breathing. How much pollen that is in the air depends on the time of day and if the weather is windy and warm. The total amount of pollen in the air for a day is called the pollen count.
Pollen grains carry on their outer coat 30-40 dissimilar proteins. The female parts of the flower need these proteins to distinguish the correct match for pollination. If you inhale in pollen grains or they get into your eyes, the proteins are discharged just as if they landed on a receptive female stigma.
Normally the immune system would take care of the foreign proteins by discarding them. Some people have an immune system that will not get rid of the pollen proteins. Instead, a process takes place that releases a chemical called histamine. The histamine causes the symptoms of the allergy.
Mid October to the end of March are usually the months when pollen is in the air. It depends on the region because of the plant's response to the climate. Trees flower when the weather starts to get warmer in the spring. The flowering time for each kind of tree lasts around two weeks but the peak pollinating period only last a couple of days. There are many varieties of grass and they each have their own flowering period anywhere between mid-December and mid-March.
There are a few ways you can lower your exposure to pollen. Pollen clings to clothes, skin and hair. Take a bath or shower and change your clothes after you have been outside. It is best to stay indoors during the morning hours between 5 and 10 am Also try to avoid being outdoors on dry days or when the wind is strong. Wear a protective mask if you must work outside. Vacuum regularly with a vacuum cleaner that catches all the airborne particles. You can also use a good air purifier to keep your indoor air clean. Taking herbs such as enchinacea and dandelion has been suggested to help allergy symptoms.
Learn as much as you can about the plants that cause your allergic reaction. This will teach to recognize the plants so you can stay away from them when they are pollinating. Keep all the windows closed during the day and run an air conditioner. Before the Pollination Period starts and after it is over you have nothing to worry about. You can even take a walk in a wooded area.