Strong winds in Arizona flare up allergy symptoms. How to protect yourself

If you have allergies and think they're worse this year than before, you're correct.
Published: Apr. 3, 2023 at 5:11 PM MST
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PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) - Are you suffering from bad allergies this year? You are not alone. Allergists say there is more pollen in the air thanks to the wet winter and monsoons in Arizona. And the strong winds on Monday only make things worse. “Pollen is very small, you usually can’t see it. Most you can’t see with the naked eye, they easily get into the air even when there is no wind. When there is wind, they can be carried distances up to 200 miles,” said Dr. Sanjay Patel.

Patel says there are ways you can protect yourself. He recommends closing the windows in your car and home to prevent pollen from coming inside. And consider masking up when outdoors. Pollen kicked up from the wind can stay in the air for several days. “Saline rinses of the nose and over the counter nasal sprays can be really helpful for others too,” said Patel.

Patel said peak pollen time is between 6 to 8 a.m., so avoid going outside during that timeframe. And if over-the-counter medicine doesn’t work, talk to your doctor about other options for relief. “There is definitely things like allergy testing, immunotherapy or allergy shots if you are really suffering,” said Patel.