By: Kyra Powell/Content Editor
Everybody knows what it means when spring comes- the snow melts, the thermometer reads above 30, the birds start singing and the grass grows greener. The sun actually shines (if only for 2 minutes at a time). However, the grass isn’t all greener on the other side. Spring also delivers a heaping serving of mosquitoes, ticks, rain, and pollen. A bittersweet time for all those who suffer from allergies.
According to Lucrecia Jesse, Blue Ridge Spanish teacher and a former registered nurse, “Allergies are an immune response that your body has to substances.”
When something foreign enters the body, the body must make a decision as to if this foreign substance is harmful. When the body mislabels something that should be fine as harmful, it starts up all the normal reactions a body would begin to preform when infected with a harmful substance. Having an “allergy” is like your body mislabeling a harmless substance as something toxic.
So what are some common allergies? “Well, you can have allergies to pet dander, foods, and environmental things like pollen.” says Jesse.
Once the body determines that this foreign substance is toxic, it reacts in a number of ways, and to various degrees. Not all allergies are severe, but some are deathly. There’s many types of allergies, such as one to peanuts or bee stings, but the one that’s most common during spring is Hay Fever.
We asked Jesse what are some symptoms of allergies she’s seen. “Itchy watery eyes, runny nose, eczema, hives, and the worst of all, anaphylaxis.”
So how can you avoid spring pollen allergies? The simple answer: you can’t. Watch the pollen count and stay indoors when its high if you’re concerned. Jesse’s advice? “Know what triggers them and stay away. Doctors can test you for allergies and could potentially prescribe antihistamines, but again, be sure to consult your doctor.”