Health & Food

Allergy season comes early for some this year

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Allergies are flaring up months before they usually do, mostly because of Southern California's unusually warm weather.

"We had no rainfall, and the spring, that is supposed to start usually in March, started much earlier. As a result, most of the trees started pollinating much earlier, and patients with allergies start suffering now in general, instead of usually when you have the peak during the springtime," said Dr. Jacob Offenberger, an allergy and asthma relief expert.

Offenberger says he has seen about a 15-percent increase in patients in recent days. On top of all the pollen in the air, we've also had a late flu season.

"The rule of thumb is that if you have a fever, most probably you have the flu, and it comes also with muscle ache and feeling really sick," said Offenberger.

The good news is even though it began early, allergy season might end early as well. That depends on whether we get rain. But if the dry spell continues and we have more fires, that also means worse air quality and more allergies.

"It will all change if the next month or this month we are going to get more rain, then the late allergy season is going to be the same," said Offenberger.

Doctors say if you are suffering and over-the-counter medication doesn't work within a week, it's probably time to visit your doctor, who can give you a prescription and run tests to see what it is you are allergic to.

(Copyright ©2014 KABC-TV/DT. All Rights Reserved.)

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