Fall Allergies - 8 News NOW

Carol Wilkinson, Reporter

Fall Allergies

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Shorter days and cooler temperatures are signs that fall is on the way -- along with fall allergies. A local specialist says that irritants are already causing problems.

Las Vegas allergy specialist Steven Becker says there has been a sharp rise in people seeking relief from the symptoms of fall allergies. "I've had a lot of patients complaining over runny nose, stuffy nose, irritated throat and a burning sensation in their throat."

Dr. Becker says that weeds are the main culprits right now, along with molds. "Molds will just take off in this environment. So there's actually quite a bit of mold even though you might not think of mold occurring in a fairly dry climate like ours."

Both pollen and mold spores are plentiful outdoors, but you can help limit their presence indoors. Dr. Becker adds, "That's why it's a good idea to make sure you're using air filters in the house and you're changing the filters in your air conditioning system because you may have mold that takes up residence in the pipes, the duct work. And also, you can have pollen that collects in these areas. So changing your air filters is really a great idea."

Allergy symptoms are similar to those of a cold. But there are some distinct differences. Dr. Becker explains, "Colds are usually more self-limiting and tend to last 7 to 10 days. Allergies tend to last longer and tend to be more associated with the itching, sneezing, irritation."

The fall season usually brings an increase in another allergy trigger -- dust mites -- that can also be spread by dirty ventilation systems.

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