By Tim Williams

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — We’ve all been enjoying the stretch of unseasonably mild days recently but with the rise in temperatures comes a spike in allergy symptoms. 

Tim Williams has more on what is triggering this mid-winter problem.

It may seem a bit early, but already allergy sufferers are getting a sense of the season.

“My nose is starting to itch a little but sometimes that’s from the dust and all the things blowing around,” said Ann Vogt.

Vogt, like many seasonal allergy sufferers, gets shots to keep symptoms under control.  Despite spring being weeks away, she’s already prepared for the worst.

“I know it’s almost upon you.  When you see the things start to bloom a little bit, you know it’s coming,” Vogt said.

“It seems rather early, but we’re already seeing a spike in the number of people suffering from tree pollen allergy,” said Dr. John Bacon, St. Joseph Medical Center.

Bacon says avoiding allergents is the goal, but if you can’t, medicines are getting better all the time.

While grass and trees have not started to bloom area-wide here in Maryland, doctors say the culprit is the wind.  Not only does it bring in temperatures from the south, it’s also helping blow in pollen.

“Once we have a warm patch and particular windy weather, it stirs up the pollen and it can blow in from miles away,” Bacon said.

So if winter is bad, what can we expect next?

“I don’t know what this spring is going to be like, except I have a bad feeling it’s going to be worse than last year if we’re already getting phone calls in February,” Bacon said.

“Even with allergies, I’d rather do allergies than the snow,” Vogt said.

Close to 50 million Americans have hay fever triggered by irritants in the air.


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