Doctors Say Allergy Season Could Be Worse This Year

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Sneezing, coughing, runny nose, in other words, allergy season is here and doctors said it would only get worse.

Winter stayed a little longer than some thought it might, leaving questions of what would spring mean for allergy sufferers.

"Some people feel like because of the harsh winter and the late spring we're getting both the grass and the trees pollinating together so the symptoms may for most patients be more severe," said allergist, Dr. Aubrey Ziegler.

Ziegler said he hadn't seen an increase in patients just yet, but he did anticipate more as the season continued.

He said some symptoms could be cleared up from over the counter drugs.

Things to keep in mind, according to Ziegler, would be if the medication caused sedation or not.

"There's three medications that are sold over the counter, antihistamines that's Cetirizine, it's the generic for one, Fexofenadine is another and there's the generic for Claritin which is Loratadine," said the doctor.

Pharmacist Kelly Rappeport said mistaking allergies for a cold was common.

She said without taking the right medication the problem would not just go away.

"With the allergy symptoms you generally don't feel quite as bad overall and it persists where as a cold is going to probably clear up within ten days," said Rappeport.

Zigler said the only way to find out what is causing a flare up would be by having an allergy test.

He said residents in the River Valley would experience allergies sooner than Northwest Arkansas due to winds from Oklahoma and Texas blowing in.

Ziegler said he expected allergy season to continue into June.



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