Allergies Surge After Year Mostly Indoors

Flowers bloom on the green roof at the World Wildlife Fund building in Washington. (Dan Friedell/WTOP via AP)

A year into the pandemic, allergy season is back, and worse than before.

Doctors told CBS2 that their waiting rooms are full of people sniffling and coughing, terrified they have the coronavirus. To make matters worse for worried sufferers, symptoms of severe allergies such as fevers and difficulty breathing do overlap with COVID symptoms.

However, allergy symptoms such as sneezing and watery, irritated eyes are not coronavirus symptoms, while an extremely high fever and loss of smell or taste are not allergy symptoms.

ENT surgeon Dr. Shawn Nasseri said, “Everyone’s terrified, ‘oh no, do I have COVID or allergies?’ We’re seeing terrible allergies because a lot of us have been indoors for the last year.”

The lack of exposure to the outdoors, and overexposure to strong cleaning chemicals, likely prevented people from strengthening their immune systems against allergies.

Now, people have another reason to wear a mask: to protect your mouth and nose from dust and pollen.

Additionally, people with serious allergies are encouraged to change their bedding often to prevent dust, and to avoid wine. There has been research suggesting the bacteria in alcohol can worsen allergies.

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