• Coping with Pollen

    In New England, tree pollens are active from late March through June. Grass pollens are active from late May through August. Ragweed abounds in late August through the first frost, usually in early October. Spring through fall, mold spores are active on damp days. Here, John M. O'Loughlin, MD, chair of Lahey's Department of Allergy & Immunology, offers some easy ways to cope with the seasons:

    • If you've been outdoors playing sports or doing chores, take a shower and change clothes when you come inside. Otherwise you'll be inhaling the pollen brought in on your clothes, and the pollen in your hair can get into pillows and bedding.
    • Use air conditioning, close windows, and keep a cool room. “You don't need to keep it ice-cold, but you'll be filtering the air,” O'Loughlin says.
    • The highest concentration of pollen occurs between 6 am and 10 am. Avoid being outdoors during that time of day. On your drive to work, keep the car windows rolled up and the air conditioner on “recirculate” so it is not bringing the outside air into the car.
    • Dogs and cats can carry pollen into the home. Wipe down pets after they have been outdoors.


    To make an appointment with an allergist at Lahey Hospital & Medical Center, call 781-744-3250. 

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