In the weather biz, we are used to warning people of severe storms and their effects. This week, it is an alert of a different sort. Ragweed pollination is hitting its peak and if you suffer from seasonal allergic rhinitis (doctor-ese for hay fever), you will need to take action.
Last week's hot and humid weather may have given ragweed sufferers a false sense of security. That's because weed pollination was rather subdued in the lazy, hazy days of late summer. However, Saturday's downpours have ushered in our first cool taste of autumn. Since ragweed works extra hard to generate pollen on cooler September nights, this week's conditions are prime to send ragweed pollen levels sky high.
Warm, sunny days after the rain will allow for ragweed and its pollen producing weed cousins to grow. Clear, cool nights will turn on ragweed's pollen assembly lines. Add it up and this week's pollen count will be THE WORST OF THE LATE SUMMER SEASON.
If you suffer from ragweed pollen, here are some suggested ways to cope.
1. Take your antihistimine as prescribed by your doctor.
2. Since weed pollination peaks at night, sleep with the windows closed. This will prevent pollens from invisiblely filtering into your bedroom.
3. Stay in a climate controlled environment as much as possibe; namely, air conditioned homes and cars.
4. When outdoors, wear a mask to reduce the amount of pollen inhaled.
5. Damp mop your hair and change clothes when coming in from the outdoors. Pollen will cling to your hair and clothes and will lead to you inhaling more of the irritating pollen.
Finally, the ragweed pollination cycle runs for 6 weeks. Since the season began in mid August, pollen levels will tail off by late September and ge gone by first frost time in October!
Until then its buyer beware when outdoors.