MISHAWAKA -- Have your allergies been bad this year? Well, you're not alone. Doctors in our area say this allergy season has been worse than normal.
It's that time of year. Colorful flowers blooming all over, but while they may be beautiful, for many they're just irritating.
"Runny nose, itchy eyes and the scratchiness in the throat," Zelda Yoder said.
For Yoder, dealing with allergies is an annual battle, but this year just seems to be worse than normal.
"It's been really horrible for me, I sneeze, I'm coughing, it's really been a really bad season for me," she said.
We all know what causes seasonal allergies, trees, grass and flowers are all around us, but one major factor the we know is pollen, and this year there's a lot more of it.
"The area we live in, from spring until fall and all during the summer there are a lot of allergens out there and when they're more of them, people are going to have more symptoms," Dr. Dale Patterson of Memorial Hospital said.
Dr. Patterson believes early warm temperatures and all of the dry weather is sending more pollen into the air.
"When it rains, the pollen gets pushed down and you'll have a good day, everything is wet, pollen isn't flying around and symptoms aren't as bad for some people," Patterson said. "When it's dry and windy the pollen will fly through the air and that's what we've had lately and that's why people have been having symptoms. But as it gets too dry and the grasses die, then it may go down a little bit more."
Patterson says there are a lot of medications available over the counter for people with allergies. The only down side, many of those medicines can make you sleepy. And generally the more sleepy it makes you, the better that medicine works.
He says in order to keep those symptoms to a minimum people should try to avoid the allergens, by staying inside an air conditioned area when it's dry, hot and windy. If you've been working in the yard, Patterson says to make sure you wash your hands and even take a shower to get all of that pollen off of you.