FALL ALLERGENS AND WHERE THEY LURK A Guide

Fall is a wonderful season to be outdoors, but with it comes a cornucopia of allergens based in your region. Rise above sneezing, nasal congestion, wheezing and itchy, watery eyes this fall with these facts and tips.

SOUTHWEST

Chenopod Weeds

There are approximately 1300 species of these flowering plants worldwide ranging from annual herbs to trees.

But families like amaranth, pigweed, waterhemp, russion thistle and lamb’s quarters are the ones we need to watch out for in fall.

These desert plants can be highly allergenic. They are wind pollinated and occur in arid areas.

WEST

Iodine Bush

These bushes grow up to 3 feet tall and mainly live in alkaline salt flats and plains from Mexico up to California. They have knobby, green stems and bloom starting in spring.

Pigweed

Plants grow to 28 feet tall, and leaves are a dull green. The flowers are dense and pretty. They start blooming in late summer and their grains look a lot like Lamb’s-Quarters, a chenopod.

NORTHEAST, MIDWEST & SOUTH

Ragweed

The mother of fall allergens, this yellow plant blooms throughout the U.S. and causes symptoms well into the fall. It is known for causing hay fever, allergic rhinitis that occurs in fall. Approximately 75 percent of people who suffer springtime allergies will also be affected by ragweed. Ragweed season starts earlier in the northeast because it cools down sooner.

Nettle Weed

Nettles are annuals and perennials with upright, fibrous stems from two to seven feet tall. The leaves can have stinging hairs covering the stems. They typically cause moderate allergies.

SOUTH

Red Mountain Cedar Tree

Texas has a major red mountain cedar tree problem. They pollenate in late fall, around December, but the region is otherwise similar to the southeast with a later ragweed season.

GENERAL FALL TIPS

Take a shower and change clothes after being outside for a long period of time, ridding pollen and other allergens from your body.

Keep car windows up when driving and use the A/C instead.

Monitor pollen and mold counts with the Weather.com Allergy Tracker powered by Flonase.

Start your day with Flonase Sensimist Allergy Relief to relieve all the worst symptoms, including nasal congestion, in a gentle mist you can barely feel.

SOURCES

Ryan Wallace, "Common Fall Allergens and How to Fight them." Healthllne.

February 26, 2015. https://www.healthline.com/health/allergies/fall-allergens#ragweed (accessed June 8, 2018)

Mark A. Dimmitt, “Chenopodiaceae (goosefoot family),” Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, 2018. http://desertmuseum.org/books/nhsd_chenopodiaceae.php (accessed June 8, 2018)

“Fighting fall allergies? Bring it.” American College of Allergy, Asthma, & Immunology. August 18, 2017. https://acaai.org/news/fighting-fall-allergies-bring-it (accessed June 8, 2018)

Michael J. Schumacher, “Allergies and Asthma in the Southwestern United States.” The University of Arizona Health Sciences Center. July 2008. http://allergy.peds.arizona.edu/southwest/grass_weeds/iodine_bush.htm  (accessed June 8, 2018)

Harris Steinman, “Weed pollens.” ImmunoCAP Explorer. 2009. http://www.immunocapexplorer.com/uploads/cms/asset_brick/asset/1353/Weed_pollens_TFS.pdf (accessed June 8, 2018)