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Welcome to the second issue of the National Allergy E-Mail Newsletter! In February 2003, we began sending this monthly newsletter packed with informative articles, valuable coupons, and exclusive offers to our valued customers and others who have expressed interest. To top it off, every month we're giving away an Austin Air HM-400 Air Purifier, valued at $400, to one lucky subscriber!

This month our feature article is Pollen Allergies and Minimizing Symptoms. In the coming months we'll have more educational articles about the aggravating factors behind allergy, asthma, and sinus problems and helpful things you can do to find relief.

Sincerely,

The National Allergy Newsletter Team
http://www.nationalallergy.com/

 

Pollen Allergies and Minimizing Symptoms

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Who, What, When, Where and Why?

35.9 million Americans suffer from seasonal allergies. With spring just around the corner, so are the symptoms of seasonal allergic rhinitis - sneezing, runny noses, congestion, itchy sinuses and watery eyes.

Seasonal allergic rhinitis or hay fever is caused when a person's immune system mistakenly identifies pollen as an intruder, much like bacteria or viruses. Once the body has identified a particular allergen as an intruder, it produces antibodies specific to that allergen and sends them to line the lungs, throat, nose, eyes, skin, and stomach. In the future, when that allergen enters the allergic person's body, it attaches to the antibodies and triggers the release of histamine. This release of histamine is what causes allergy symptoms.

Pollens are the male reproductive cells of plants. The troubling pollens for allergy sufferers are those of trees, grasses and weeds as opposed to flowering plants. While flowering plants depend on insects to carry their heavy, waxy pollen granules from plant to plant, trees, grasses, and weeds produce light, dry pollen granules that are designed to travel with the wind to pollinate other plants.

Trees, grasses and weeds combine to release pollen from early spring to early fall, although several factors affect the timing and degree of the pollen season. The time when a given species of plant pollinates is based on the relative length of days and nights. So, the same plant will pollinate earlier in the South and later in the North. Weather conditions also play a role in how much pollen a plant produces and are the primary cause of the varying severity of the pollen season from year to year.

Different people are allergic to the pollen of different plants, but people whose bodies develop allergies to one plant are very likely to develop allergies to others as well. The plants which produce allergenic pollen have been narrowed down and the most common culprits along with the time of year that they pollinate are listed in the chart below.

TreesGrassesWeeds
Early Spring to
Early Summer
Late Spring to
Late Summer
Late Summer to
Early Fall
  • ash
  • birch
  • cedar
  • cypress
  • elm
  • hickory
  • maple
  • oak
  • poplar
  • sycamore
  • walnut
  • bermuda
  • blue
  • orchard
  • red top
  • rye
  • sweet vernal
  • timothy
  • cockleweed
  • pigweed
  • ragweed
  • Russian thistle
  • sagebrush
  • tumbleweed

Pollen Counts

Pollen counts are a valuable tool for allergy sufferers during the pollen season. These counts can help allergy sufferers plan outdoor activities on days and times when pollen is least likely to cause problems. Pollen counts are frequently provided by local TV and radio stations and newspapers. You can also find pollen counts online through the National Allergy Bureau's website (http://www.aaaai.org/nab).

Tips and Tricks for Surviving the Pollen Season

Pollen is the most difficult airborne allergen to avoid, but there are still a number of things that you can do to minimize your exposure to pollen.

In your home:
  • Avoid open windows, attic fans, or any other unfiltered openings for pollen to get into your home. Instead, run your central air or a well-filtered window unit for air circulation. If you're torn between your allergies and the desire to open your windows on a pretty day, consider using window screen filters to keep pollen out.
  • Replace your furnace filters or wash electrostatic filters regularly to help clean pollen out of the air. You can also use vent filters on the room vents to catch anything that might have made it by the furnace filter or pollen and other allergens that may have already settled in your air ducts.
  • Run a HEPA air cleaner in your bedroom to help eliminate the pollen that makes its way into your home.
  • Don't dry your clothes on an outside line where they can collect pollen. Instead dry them in a vented dryer.
  • Outdoor pets are covered in pollen. Wipe them down when you let them indoors and bathe them frequently. You should also avoid letting them track pollen onto your bed.
When working outdoors:
  • Avoid yardwork like mowing the lawn or raking leaves, which stir up even more allergens than are already airborne. If you cannot avoid yardwork, wear a pollen mask.
  • Take a shower when you come inside to remove pollen from your hair and skin and use a nasal irrigation system to remove pollen from your nasal passages.
  • Your clothes and shoes collect pollen when you go out. When you get home leave your shoes by the door and change clothes as soon as possible. This cuts down the time you spend in contact with pollen and the amount of pollen that you bring into your home.
When you're going out:
  • Keep car windows and sunroofs closed and the air on recirculate when traveling in your car to prevent pollen from making its way in. If that's not enough, consider using a portable HEPA air purifier that runs off the cigarette lighter in your car.
  • Keep in mind that pollen is at its worst on windy days, because the wind stirs even more pollen and it travels further. And, pollen is at its best after a prolonged rain, because the rain washes the pollen out of the air.
  • Look for areas with less pollen, like the beach, when planning your next vacation.

If you have specific questions about pollen, e-mail us at newsletter-questions@nationalallergy.com and we'll do our best to help.

Stay tuned next month for a look at Pet Dander Allergies, another exciting coupon, more exclusive offers, and another chance to win an Austin Air HM-400 Air Purifier.

 

This Month's Exclusive Offers

$30 off Whirlpool Whispure AP150 Air Purifiers!
On sale for $99.99 until 4/11/2003.
*

 

Buy one NeilMed Sinus Rinse Kit and get a second kit for half price until 4/11/2003! *

*Internet Orders Only


 
*Internet Orders Only


Filter pollen and other allergens out of the air in your home with true HEPA filtration incorporating 3M Filtrete Technology. Filtrete is engineered to create less air flow resistance and that means quieter operation and less power consumption. In fact they're so quite that if within 30 days you find a quieter HEPA air purifier, Whirlpool will take it back and refund full purchase price to you.   Don't let pollen and other allergens get you down this spring. Saline nasal washes have been used for many years to clear troubled sinuses and a 1999 study, published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, found a significant decrease in pollen allergies in patients who rinsed their sinuses daily. This physician developed Sinus Rinse Kit comes with everything you'll need for 50 soothing treatments.

To take advantage of the offers in this newsletter, be sure to subscribe by clicking here. After subscribing, you will have an opportunity to read the current newsletter complete with the promotional codes.

 

Help Your Friends

People you care about can benefit from allergen avoidance. Help them learn more about minimizing the allergens in their environment by sending them this issue of the National Allergy E-Mail Newsletter. They'll thank you for it!

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