Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Do you live in an allergy-prone city?

Sniffling and sneezing are common spring allergy
health effects affecting millions of Americans.
Airborne irritants are the reason why 40 million Americans suffer from seasonal allergies each year.

This overreaction of the immune system is characterized by health symptoms such as itchy and watery eyes, sneezing, coughing, wheezing, nasal or sinus congestion and sometimes even difficulty breathing.

Where you live may have a direct impact on the severity of your allergies, according to researchers.

The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA) helps people determine the worst cities for allergies by nation, after researchers examine the 100 largest urban areas in the United States according to three factors: Pollen levels in the city, sales of prescription and over the counter allergy medicines as well as the number of certified allergists and immunologists per patient.

The data was provided by three different sources: Pollen.com, IMS Health and the American Board of Medical Specialties.

According to researchers, some of the worst cities for allergies include:

  1. Knoxville, TN
  2. McAllen, TX
  3. Louisville, KY
  4. Jackson, MS
  5. Wichita, KS

While many southern cities were named some of the worst spots, a majority of the "allergy capitals" are located in the Eastern United States, including northeast and southeast states.

Typically, spring allergies last from March to May, when trees like oak, mountain cedar, elm and maple begin to pollinate, but this year’s season may last longer since high temperatures made pollen counts spike much earlier.

Experts suggest that those suffering from hay fever get tested, use antihistamines, eye drops and a saline wash for the sinuses, avoid outdoor activities between 10 am and 2 pm when pollen production is highest and take quick showers at night to wash off pollen.

Keeping a home clean and uncluttered also helps reduce the allergen count indoors.

Source: Forbes

Indoor air can make a difference for allergies

Indoor air pollution can aggravate or even cause allergic reactions, so experts suggest keeping a home tidy and clean, vacuuming regularly and using a HEPA air filter to help trap allergens.

However, allergens and particles are not the only irritants that can aggravate people’s symptoms. Airborne chemicals and odors also contribute to the indoor air pollution.
A HEPA filter is an invaluable
tool for people with allergies,
but a complete system requires
additional filters like carbon & UV.

AllerAir has developed portable and highly efficient air purifiers for allergies and asthma that not only feature a medical-grade HEPA filter and a 360-degree air intake for maximum protection from allergens, but also a deep-bed activated carbon filter for the removal of chemicals, odors and gases.

Some of AllerAir’s most popular allergy air purifiers include the AirMedic Exec, the AirMedic+ Exec (with optional UV lamp for the neutralization of mold spores, bacteria and viruses) and the 5000 Exec.

For more information, contact AllerAir to speak to an IAQ expert.