Have you found yourself coughing, congested, and rubbing your eyes a lot this spring?
Doctors say this is an unusual year when it comes to allergies.
After a wet winter, a cold April and the warmest May on record, everything has bloomed and pollinated on a shorter timescale. So there's a higher concentration of pollen and mold making allergy sufferers downright miserable.
21 News caught up with Joe Vanek jogging in Mill Creek MetroPark in Boardman, "A couple of days ago I was running on the East Side of Newport and the wind was picking up and you could just see the pollen coming off the trees like it was a sandstorm," Vanek said
And it's not just those who normally have allergies who are continually coughing and sneezing and blowing their nose, but some who have never had allergies in their life.
Dr. Asif Kahn is a specialist in allergies and immunology. "I had a 70-year-old lady come in today who never had problems and she's screaming and yelling today. Why am I having all these problems? So I don't know exactly what to tell her. But you can develop allergies anytime in your life. And yes this is an unusual year," said Dr. Kahn.
So what can you do to find relief so you can enjoy the warm weather without feeling miserable?
Pharmacist Bruce Dilullo with Brines Hometown Pharmacy in Girard shares this advice. "People, since we're having nice weather, want to open their windows up and actually that could exacerbate symptoms because pollens getting in your house and you're breathing that. So they advise this time of year keep your windows close."
At Brines Hometown Pharmacy over the counter allergy medications are available including Flonase and something similar to the Neti Pot that flushes out your sinuses.
Dilullo says anything that flushes out your sinuses works well, "They kind of flush out your sinuses and they work wonderful. The only thing is people don't like using them because of how they work. But they work excellent in cleaning out the sinuses and I highly suggest if you can do it use the Neti Pots," Dilullo said.
Dr. Kahn says over the counter antihistamines, eye drops and nasal sprays that are steroids can all be very effective; just follow the directions.
But there are other things you need to do when you're at home including if you have a dog make sure you rinse your pet off after they've come in from running through the grass.
"Otherwise, they're just going to bring all the grain pollens in. The grass and the tree pollen it's all in their fur. It will just shake off in the house and all of a sudden you have pollen everywhere. So you'll never have relief," Dr. Kahn said.
According to Dr. Kahn, we are looking at numbers of pollen grains that are flying in the atmosphere and in our air, "And the numbers that we're seeing as allergists are beyond what we have actually ever seen," he said.