For allergy sufferers, ragweed season can create a host of allergy symptoms, from sneezing and runny noses to itchy eyes and sore throats. Ragweed may play an even bigger role in your allergies than you realize. Here are some lesser-known facts that may help you through the season.
1. Ragweed Can Confuse Your Immune System
Your body’s immune system can be overprotective and may perceive other flowering plants as ragweed. Sunflowers, sage, rabbitbrush, mugwort, groundsel bush, eupatorium and burweed marsh elder can all trigger a reaction in folks who are allergic to ragweed.
The protein in some foods is similar to ragweed pollen as well, which can cause oral allergy symptoms if you also suffer from a ragweed allergy. Be aware before snacking on these common triggers:
- Sunflower seeds
2. Ragweed Can Travel Very Long Distances
Because ragweed pollen is very light, it can easily be lifted by the wind and carried miles and miles away. Ragweed has been discovered in the ocean 400 miles away from the coast where it would grow, and two miles high in the air!
This means that ragweed can land on you and be tracked inside your home, where your symptoms can continue. We recommend following a few preventive tips:
- Cover your hair when going outside, and/or wash your hair at night to remove any trace of ragweed pollen
- Remove shoes outside and leave them at the door before going inside
- After spending time outdoors, change your clothes and pop worn garments into the laundry.
3. Ragweed Season Varies By Region
Local climate plays a big role in when your allergies will flare up. In Minnesota, ragweed season peaks from August through the first hard frost. In southern states, it can begin as early as July, triggering ragweed allergy symptoms much earlier. In some states, it can last through November.
If you’re traveling, make sure to check the local allergy index and come prepared.
Take Advantage of Comprehensive Ragweed Allergy Care
Allergies are no walk in the park. Thankfully, with the right medical guidance, ragweed and other triggers can be managed to restore your quality of life.
At Richfield Medical Group, our care team helps you and your family manage allergy symptoms during ragweed season and beyond.
Contact us today for an appointment.