26 August, 2011
Palm Tree Allergy
Palm tree allergy is caused by seasonal pollen exhibited from these tropical trees. According to the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, palm trees can bloom between the months of January and June, depending on what climate you reside in. Palm allergies are common, due to the prevalence of the trees in various areas of the United States. Once this type of allergy has been identified, you can take measures to help prevent symptoms when pollen levels are high. More severe cases require diagnosis and treatment from an allergist.
Allergies come in different forms, so not everyone who has a pollen allergy is allergic to tree pollen. A palm tree allergy is indicative of your body’s reduced immunity to pollen, which can sometimes be genetic. When your body comes into contact with tree pollen, it releases histamine, the aggravator of common allergy symptoms. There are certain types of palm trees that don’t exhibit pollen, such as Phoenix palms, so it is always important to identify the differences before planting any new trees in your yard.
Pollen travels through the air that you breathe when it is in season. Unfortunately, the particles can get lodged in your nose, ears, throat and eyes, causing allergy symptoms. Common ailments include itchy eyes, stuffy nose, headache and sore throat. Severe symptoms can be related to allergic asthma, and can include wheezing and general breathing difficulties.
Palm tree allergies are best avoided by preventing your exposure to them. However, this task can be challenging if you live in a community where palm trees are present, even if they don’t reside in your own yard. This is due to the fact that pollen travels easily through the wind. To minimize exposure, the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences recommends avoiding outdoor activities between 5 a.m. and 10 a.m., because pollen levels are generally at their peak during those hours. You can also help keep pollen from entering your home by running the air conditioning and by showering upon entering.
Preventive measures may not be enough if your pollen allergies are severe. Antihistamine medications help prevent allergy symptoms before they start. Depending on your diagnosis, your doctor might suggest that you take these medications daily. Decongestants are helpful in alleviating stuffy nose, while eye drops and nasal sprays can reduce irritation. In some cases, allergy medications may not be enough, especially if your symptoms disrupt your everyday living. Allergy shots, or immunotherapy, are often recommended for such patients. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration cites that approximately 80 percent of all allergy shot symptoms experience a reduced dependency for medications within one year of immunotherapy.
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