This allergy season is something to sneeze about - New York News

This allergy season is something to sneeze about

Posted: Updated:
CHICAGO (Sun-Times Media Wire) -

Allergy sufferers, you're likely in for another rough season, but not as bad as last year, Chicago's longtime allergen measurer said.

With the erratic weather Chicago has had so far, it's hard to make a solid prediction, said Dr. Joseph Leija, still the only person authorized to perform the pollen count for the Midwest on behalf of the National Allergy Bureau and a retired allergist at Loyola University Health System's Gottlieb Memorial Hospital.

But Leija said, "It will be more likely, [with it] warming up [and] with all this rain and all this snow that we've had ... to produce quite a bit of pollen for the trees, the grass and everything else."

Even so, he's not expecting to see people with allergies suffer as much as they did last year.

"Last year was a special year," he said, pointing to the unusually high temperatures in February and March.

This year, on the other hand, February was one of the snowier on record in Chicago, while April is one of the wettest. And right now, Chicago area residents are seeing a chilly spring. More spring-like temperatures in the 60s and above appears to be on the way, though.

Pollen, a fine powder released by trees, grasses and weeds, travels best on warm, dry, breezy days. But rain is needed to help trees and grasses grow.

The official start of the allergy count this year for the National Allergy Bureau, the pollen count, was March 18.

Every weekday of the allergy season, Leija, an octogenerian, climbs the stairs to the roof atop Gottlieb Memorial Hospital at 6 a.m. and measures mold, pollen and other irritants. He's been in charge of monitoring for the last two decades.

Tips from Leija to minimize allergies include washing your hair before sleeping at night, staying inside in air-conditioning and rinsing nasal passages with saline solution to remove trapped particles. Allergy medication can also help.

Follow Us!

Share Your Photos & Video

  • HealthHealthMore>>

  • Losing the weight without cutting the butter

    Losing the weight without cutting the butter

    If you're trying to lose some weight, or lower your blood pressure, you may be trying to cut the fat out of your diet. Dietician Sylvia Melendez Klinger says some fat is good for you, even butter!
    If you're trying to lose some weight, or lower your blood pressure, you may be trying to cut the fat out of your diet. Dietician Sylvia Melendez Klinger says some fat is good for you, even butter!
  • Dr. Mona: Kids and codeine

    Dr. Mona: Kids and codeine

    Dr. Mona joined us on FOX 32 News at Noon to talk about what codeine is used for in children and why it may be dangerous.
    Dr. Mona joined us on FOX 32 News at Noon to talk about what codeine is used for in children and why it may be dangerous.
  • Drug samples may lead to more expensive prescriptions

    Drug samples may lead to more expensive prescriptions

    Have you ever received free samples of medication at your doctor's office? Dr. Mona Khanna talks about an eye-opening study about how doctors are influenced to prescribe expensive medication.
    Have you ever received free samples of medication at your doctor's office? Dr. Mona Khanna talks about an eye-opening study about how doctors are influenced to prescribe expensive medication.
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices