Polar vortex bad news for allergy sufferers

BOARDMAN, Ohio (WKBN) – Spring has arrived in the Valley, which may not be welcomed news to allergy sufferers.

Some health officials are projecting this season could be worse, and here’s a hint – you can thank the polar vortex.

The spring bloom is happening, according to Mill Creek MetroParks Horticulture Director Keith Kaiser. Native wildflowers and many of the early ephemerals as well as trees such as maples and willows are also budding.

It is all very beautiful to look at, but the pollen is what is behind all those stuffy noses. In particular, pollen counts in Ohio generally rank very high.

Tammy Todd, certified nurse practitioner with Minute Clinic, said the pollen counts could be higher than in years past and it is thanks to the polar vortex. Now spring has been nicknamed the Pollen Vortex.

“The spring season of 2014 is projected to have a very high degree of pollen related to the polar vortex which caused a very deep freeze that is now causing everything to bloom and come out at the same time, which is going to create a lot of the allergy symptoms,” said Todd.

Todd said more people have come through the doors with allergy symptoms. She said the best way to treat them is with antihistamines and nasal sprays.

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