RALEIGH, NC. - It's that time of year again when the flowers bloom, and the pollen is in the air. For many people, this means the start of seasonal allergies, and unfortunately, if you live in Raleigh, you're in for a rough ride. The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA) has named Raleigh one of this year's "Allergy Capitals," meaning it's one of the most challenging cities in the country for people with seasonal pollen allergies.
According to the AAFA's 2023 Allergy Capitals report, Raleigh ranks 16th on the list of the most challenging places to live with seasonal allergies in the United States. The report considers several factors, including total pollen scores for tree, grass, and weed pollen, over-the-counter medication usage, and the number of allergy specialists in each city. The data used in the rankings come from the previous year.
Raleigh's ranking is significant because it's the highest-ranked North Carolina city on the list, making it the worst place in the state for seasonal allergies. Greensboro also ranked in the top 20 at number 19, with Winston-Salem at number 29. Charlotte, on the other hand, received an average overall rating for seasonal allergies, placing 32nd. At the same time, Durham came in at number 79 with an overall higher-than-average rating.
So, what makes Raleigh such a difficult place to live with seasonal allergies? The report states that Raleigh ranks lower than average for seasonal allergies. Regarding plant pollen, Raleigh ranked 39th for tree pollen, 16th for grass pollen, and 11th for weed pollen. The city also received a more terrible than-normal ranking for over-the-counter allergy medications sold and used and a lower-than-average ranking for the number of immunologists and allergists.
Despite these rankings, Raleigh had seen a significant improvement in its ranking from last year when it was ranked 81st in the Allergy Capitals report. This improvement could be due to increased awareness of seasonal allergies in the area and more effective treatment options for those suffering from allergies.
If you're one of the many people living in Raleigh with seasonal allergies, there are several things you can do to make life easier during allergy season. First and foremost, it's essential to see an allergist and get tested for specific allergens to determine what triggers your symptoms. Then, once you know what you're allergic to, you can take steps to avoid those allergens.
Other tips for managing seasonal allergies include keeping windows and doors closed during peak pollen times, using air filters in your home, and taking over-the-counter allergy medication as directed by your doctor. Showering and changing your clothes after spending time outside is also a good idea to remove any pollen that may have been collected on your skin or clothing.
While living with seasonal allergies in Raleigh can be challenging, there are ways to manage your symptoms and enjoy all the city offers. With the right treatment plan and extra care, you can breathe easier and enjoy the beautiful North Carolina springtime.
What's your experience with seasonal allergies in your city, and how do you manage your symptoms during allergy season? Share your thoughts in the comments, and if you found this article worth reading, show some love and buy me a coffee. It will be greatly appreciated and might even prevent me from falling asleep on my keyboard.
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