We have never felt more ready for spring than we do this year (if we have one more day of freezing-in-April temperatures, we might lose our minds). But there are two sides to every coin, and unfortunately, with the wonders of springtime (sunshine, warmer temperatures, and flowers galore) come the less-than-glorious realities of spring allergies. And as if the sniffles and itchy eyes aren’t bad enough already, the symptoms sometimes seem to be especially exacerbated by those pesky April showers. Coincidence? Science says not so much.
“After the rain, people’s allergy symptoms will usually increase,” says Dr. Stanley Goldstein, MD, who specializes in allergy treatment, along with asthma and immunology. “This is a result of the humidity and warm temperatures that follow a storm. Raindrops can also split pollen grains into smaller particles, spreading allergens farther.”
So, now that you know the worse-than-usual allergy symptoms during rain showers are actually worse than usual and it’s not all in your head, what can you do about it? According to Goldstein, your best bet is to have a look at the weather ahead of time so that you know when some rain is on the way. That way, you can get out ahead of it by taking some allergy meds before the rain throws your symptoms into a bit of a tizzy. Other than that, you’ll just want to keep up the usual allergy precautions – showering at the end of every day to wash away any pollen that might be on your skin and clothes, or closing your windows at home and running a fan to keep the air circulating – to keep your symptoms at bay.
The way we see it, even if it takes a little work to keep your allergies in check, it’s a small price to pay for finally saying goodbye to winter. We’ll take it.