During the summer months, it is not unusual to have a worsening of allergy symptoms. In some cases, patients attribute their symptoms only to pollen, such as from grass. But another significant allergen may be the cause of worsening allergy symptoms - mold spores.
Outdoor seasonal mold is a major allergen for many allergic patients. Two mold spores may be responsible for such symptoms: Cladosporium during the summer months, and alternaria in the fall. Cladosporium is the most common outdoor mold allergen which is particularly spread on dry windy days. Epicoccum is another common mold allergen during the summer months, primarily in agricultural areas. Alternaria is most prevalent in the fall months and is associated with worsening of asthma.
As with pollen the best environmental control measure is keeping windows closed in the home and car. With the onset of nasal or eye symptoms, rinsing with an appropriate saline solution is helpful to clear the mold spores. Taking a shower in the evening and changing clothing too will help to reduce mold spores that may you have been exposed too during the time outdoors.
Enjoy the summer months by taking these simple precautions.