Kids with allergies hit hard by early pollen - CBS46 News

Kids with allergies hit hard by early pollen

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(Source: WGCL) (Source: WGCL)

If your kids are sneezing or coughing it might not be the cold or flu. Doctors say spring allergy season has come earlier this year than ever before.

Pollen counts are setting records this month and sending kids to the doctor.

Dejuan Johnson, 6, loves his Pokémon cards but playing with them outside can be an issue, according to his mom.

“Definitely the itchy eyes. I am seeing a lot of that with him,” Dejuan’s mom, Shyreon Johnson, shared with CBS46. A couple weeks ago when Dejuan had the flu, his doctor suggested it may not be his only medical problem.

“They informed me that his allergies were inflamed as well,” Johnson explained.

On Wednesday Dejuan went to the Children's Healthcare of Atlanta Allergy Clinic for an allergy test.

Medical Director Dr. Jennifer Shih says pollen is a common cause of allergies so if your child has itchy eyes or an itchy nose right now, it may be time to take them to an allergist.

“It can be confusing if it is really a cold versus allergies,” Dr. Shih contended.

Pollen counts are traditionally high in the spring but not usually in February. Last year, only February 29 had a pollen level in the high range. This February, thanks to a mild winter, there have been nine days in the high range.

“Starting early means that we are going to have a longer season,” Dr. Shih stated.

With a long season ahead doctors have this advice:

  • Pollen levels tend to be highest in the morning so if you child suffers from pollen allergies considering moving their morning activities to the afternoon or evening.
  • Keep the doors and windows of your home closed to keep pollen out.
  • Change clothes and shower after being outdoors.

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