While many people think of spring as prime-time pollen season, it’s ragweed pollen that is wreaking havoc right now. Ragweed allergy season in New Jersey usually reaches peak levels in mid-September and the fine powder hangs around until the first frost. Allergies affect as many as 30 percent of adults and 40 percent of children. Approximately 10-20 percent of suffer from the ragweed allergy.
When is Allergy Season in New Jersey?
We have three allergy seasons in New Jersey:
- Tree allergy season: March, April and May, going into June.
- Grass allergy season: May and June and sometimes into July.
- Ragweed allergy season that starts in late summer and goes into the first frost.
What Exactly is Ragweed?
Ragweeds are soft-stemmed weeds that grow in much of the U.S. most common to the East and Midwest. Of the seventeen species, ragweed belongs to a family of plants that also includes sage, marigolds, sunflowers, burweed, etc. Warmth, lowered humidity and a breezy evening can all help create the ideal environment for ragweed flowers to release pollen.
Airborne pollen tends to peak between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m., depending on the weather. Rain and low morning temperatures can slow the pollen release.
Symptoms of ragweed allergies are similar to those of other pollen allergies and can include sneezing, runny nose, nasal congestion, headaches, irritated eyes, and itchy throat.
Climate Change May Be Increasing NJ Allergy Problems
Milder winters and warmer seasonal air associated with climate change could be having an impact on allergies by creating a longer allergy season in New Jersey and spawning more intense releases of pollen.
It is estimated that a single ragweed plant can produce up to 1 billion grains of pollen. And that pollen is being felt (and suffered) by many residents in New Jersey.
Asthma and Allergies
Ragweed pollen can also aggravate asthma symptoms, leading to increased coughing and wheezing. Nine out of 10 children who suffer from asthma have allergy triggers.
One of the most important things you can do to reduce symptoms is to reduce exposure. Create a personal allergy action plan. Sufferers can track the pollen counts online through the Allergy and Asthma Centers of New Jersey and stay inside during peak hours.
Keep windows closed to keep pollen out of the house or car, remove outer clothing before entering the house and take a shower as soon as possible after being outside to remove pollen that has collected on hair and skin.
eMedical Urgent Care Walk-In Clinic
Allergic disease, including asthma, is the fifth leading chronic disease in the U.S. in people of all ages. If you are unsure or have never experienced allergy symptoms before eMedical Urgent Care can help you differentiate the cause of your symptoms.
Our emergency medicine physicians provide urgent medical care to both adults and children with convenient hours designed to fit all your busy schedules. Learn more about our services and how we can treat you and your family by calling our location in Berkeley Heights, New Jersey (908) 464-6700, or Middletown, New Jersey (732) 957-0707.