One seasonal allergy might be in the rearview mirror, but a Northern Virginia allergy doctor says another one is coming right up.
Dr. Troy Baker, an allergy physician at Kaiser Permanente, says that the pollinating season for trees, grasses, and weeds is “out of the way” until roughly Valentine’s Day.
That said, mold spores are in the air this time of year, Baker says. If you’re allergic to those, that could be a problem — and it’s not likely to be a great season for that.
“The El Niño phenomenon is going to really peak in December and the winter months, and so we’re going to have probably a lot of rain on the horizon, and maybe some warmer temperatures,” Baker says. “And so mold is likely going to be a little stronger in December and early 2024 than we normally have.”
El Niño is the warming of the waters in the eastern tropical Pacific Ocean to above average temperatures. It’s expected to bring the region a wetter, possibly snowier winter.
Expect the relatively warm temperatures to continue past December into the new year, Baker says.
“We’re probably going to have some pretty bad pollen seasons,” he says.
You May Not Have an Allergy
While you may think what you have is an allergy, it may not be.
Plenty of people are getting sniffles and other cold-like symptoms, such as fever, muscle aches, chills, loss of the sense of smell, or fatigue.
“The symptoms can be confusing, because they seem very similar to the symptoms you get with hay fever, but in reality, they’re not,” Baker says. “They can be RSV, COVID-19, or a common cold type of infection.”
With holiday gatherings coming up, Baker recommends getting the available vaccines as recommended by your doctor as soon as possible, keeping in mind that they usually take a couple of weeks to work.
Feature image, stock.adobe.com
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