When Fall Allergies Attack

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  • A couple walking in a park in fall, the woman holding a leaf that has changed colors.Summer’s over and you may find yourself falling into some serious allergy symptoms. Sneezing? Runny nose? Itchy eyes? Fall allergy triggers are different, but they can cause just as many symptoms as you have in spring and summer.

    What Causes Fall Allergies?

    Ragweed is the biggest allergy trigger in the fall. Though the yellow-flowering weed usually starts releasing pollen in August, it can last into September and October. About three-quarters of people who are allergic to spring plants are also allergic to ragweed.

    Ragweed pollen loves to get around. Even if it doesn’t grow where you live, it can still travel for hundreds of miles on the wind. For some people who are allergic to ragweed, foods like bananas, melon, zucchini, and certain other fruits and vegetables can also cause symptoms.

    Mold is another fall trigger. You may think of mold growing in your basement or bathroom – damp areas in the house – but mold spores also love wet spots outside. Piles of damp leaves are ideal breeding grounds for mold.

    Don’t forget dust mites. While they are common during the humid summer months, they can get stirred into the air the first time you turn on your heat in the fall. Dust mites can trigger sneezes, wheezes, and runny noses.

    Going back to school can also trigger allergies in kids because mold and dust mites are common in schools.

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