Record Heat Brings Out Bugs, Allergies

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Record heat has hit the area but unseasonable temperatures aren’t all that arrived with spring; allergies and insects are here too.

5NEWS spoke to specialists to see what impact this warm weather is having.

Your spring-like symptoms arrived earlier than usual this year; allergy specialist, Dr. Martha Hutson says spring has sprung and so have allergies.

"Usually we start about the last few days of February, when the elm trees start to pollinate. About the second week of January I had a lot of people coming in complaining about red, itchy eyes," said Dr. Hutson.

In fact, allergy season has arrived about a month ahead of schedule.

"We are about three and a half to four weeks ahead of time so that's really made a big mess. Since we have had all of these nice days, people get out and walk and then they get miserable," said Dr. Hutson.

She says an antihistamine or a trip to your family allergist can clear up those symptoms. Unfortunately, allergies aren’t the only thing that arrived with the warmer weather.

"Insects have also come out earlier than we would normally see them and I expect that this year we will see more insect pressure because we did not have a good killing freeze this winter," said Craig Anderson, Arkansas Associate Professor of Horticulture and Director of Agriculture.

Record setting heat in March may mean another scorching summer. Andersen says the best way to protect your plants is to start watering now.

"If you are normally doing things by the calendar for deciding when to start spraying for diseases and insects, move your schedule up about three weeks because things are moving along very quickly," said Anderson.

For those suffering from allergies, Dr. Hutson has good and bad news. She says tree allergies should diminish soon but grass allergies will strike with a vengeance shortly after.