Itchy eyes, runny nose: Allergies and how to combat them

COHOES, N.Y. (NEWS10) – Spring has sprung and with it come allergies.

“Typical allergy symptoms would be runny nose, stuffy nose, sneezing,” Dr. Scott Osur said.

Dr. Osur said April and May can be the worst months for allergies.

“And then the itching, which is really dramatic with seasonal allergies,” he said.

If you’ve never had allergies before, but suddenly you’re suffering, there could be a reason.

“Geographical changes, age can play a role; sometimes if the season is particularly bad,” NEWS10 ABC Chief Meteorologist Steve Caporizzo said.

This season is pretty normal, but Steve said there are different allergy seasons.

“In the spring, you’re looking at tree pollen,” he explained. “You know, when all the trees are blooming, they look beautiful, but there’s a lot of stuff going through the air.”

Then comes grass season and then more.

“The ragweed pollen season, the goldenrod,” Steve said. “And that, for most people, is the worst.”

Rain fell on Monday, but the pollen count will be high when it’s sunny and windy.

“The flowers are closed up,” Steve said. “The rain cleans the pollen out, so the pollen count decreases considerably.”

That’s why Dr. Osur said it’s important to prepare for anything.

“You want to take an antihistamine continuously in pollen season because it’s much more effective if it’s in your system regularly,” he said.

There are several antihistamines on the market.

“Xyzal, Clairtin or Zyrtec, which are all non-sedating antihistamines,” Cohoes Pharmacist John McDonald said. “You can take them and continue to function.”

McDonald said over-the-counter is a great, affordable option, especially if you need relief fast.

“When your eyes are watery and your nose is runny, some people just don’t have time to run to the doctor,” he said.

If over-the-counter medications don’t work, then head to an allergist who will be able to help.

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