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Allergy season hits the Old Pueblo

How to keep your allergy symptoms under control
Butterfly in nature
Posted at 8:19 PM, Apr 13, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-13 23:19:13-04

TUCSON, Ariz. (KGUN) — Itchy eyes, sneezing, rashes and all the rest, the 2022 allergy season is here and for many it can be a tough road to travel.

Dr. Tara Carr is an allergist with Banner University Medical Center. She says while the trees are in full bloom there are some things you can do to keep your allergy symptoms in check.

“Each year is going to vary a little bit, based on what our weather is, how much rain we get during a particular winter season. How warm it gets, how quickly things change. This year we’ve seen more pollen so far than last year, probably because we had a wetter monsoon than the year before,” Dr. Carr said.

Dr. Carr says that masking up during allergy season is one of the best ways to help ease symptoms.

"Masking has improved people's allergy symptoms because some of our allergy patients just recognize that its helpful to wear the outside and wear them while taking a walk outdoors. That’s not comfortable for everybody but it certainly can help reduce how much you are exposed to and how much you’re breathing in,” Dr. Carr said.

For some both COVID and allergy symptoms can be similar and doctors say getting testing for both is key, especially with the variety of viruses circulating during the spring.

“I think it's hard to tell the difference sometimes, because a lot of the symptoms overlap. The stuffiness of the nose of the head and the drainage. In general, if you’re feeling sick, feverish, achy those aren’t classic signs of allergy. It might suggest a viral infection whether it's COVID or some other virus,” Dr. Carr said.

Aside from taking over the counter allergy medications and nose sprays the doctor says you can make simple changes to keep pollen out of your home.

"If you think it's coming from the outdoors it's best to keep your windows shut, turn the air conditioning on, filters are helpful on parts of the home. Taking a shower before bedtime can help reduce the pollen that’s on your skin and in your hair. If you have a pet who’s running around outdoors you might want to hose them down if they jump on your bed to reduce how much pollen they’re bringing inside,” Dr. Carr said.

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Shawndrea Thomas is an anchor and investigative reporter for KGUN 9. Shawndrea is living her dream as a journalist who’s passionate about making a difference. Share your story ideas and important issues with Shawndrea by emailing shawndrea.thomas@kgun9.com or by connecting on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.