Allergies worsen as dust brings irritants

High winds, dust making allergies worse

LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - Despite heavy rains, strong winds managed to kick up dust as the ground started drying out. For a lot of people, dust brings allergy symptoms like a cough, sore throat, or itchy, watery eyes, but it’s not the dust that people are allergic to, it’s what comes with it.

“Bacteria, virus, fungus, pollutants, a lot of those could be causing your symptoms, it’s not just that there’s dirt in the air and it’s not that it’s just pollen there are a lot of reasons your symptoms can worsen on a day like this," explains Dr. James Tarbox, an Allergist with Texas Tech Physicians.

A day when the normal blue sky is replaced by brown.

“It’s like the sand or the dirt, you know that wouldn’t be an allergy, but the mold that likes the dry windy days that could be coming in with the wind or the tree pollen, all those different things you can definitely be allergic to those," says Dr. Amanda Lewis an Allergist / Immunologist at the Allergy & Asthma Clinic of West Texas.

To help lessen your symptoms doctors say it’s important to change your clothes and take a shower after spending the day outside. Remember to wash your bedding often, and keep your windows closed.

“Up to 25%of the allergens that are outside of your home will get inside your home. It doesn’t matter if all your doors and windows are closed they just happen to get through. That’s why it’s really important, people have this idea of doing spring cleaning, let me open up all my windows, air out the house, and that’s actually the worst thing you can do.”

Nasal sprays and over the counter medicines are also recommend to help you feel better. If you can’t kick your symptoms though, you could try allergy shots and Dr. Lewis says they’re not as scary as you might think, saying the needle is much smaller than you might think,

“People don’t realize how helpful they actually are I think that’s one of the biggest things that until you’ve been on the shots you don’t really know how much they can change your life.”

Dr. Lewis adds that it’s important to not to guess what you’re allergic to. Instead, get tested so you’ll know what’s bugging you and then you can get the specific treatment to fix the problem.

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