Surge in Ragweed and Pollen Levels Causes Seasonal Allergies

Published 08/15 2014 02:00PM

Updated 08/15 2014 02:22PM

Almost 40 million Americans suffer from seasonal allergies in our nation and with Fall just around the corner, we might be seeing a surge in ragweed and pollen levels.

"In terms of ragweed, the worst is yet to come."

Dr. William Smits, Medical Director at the Fort Wayne Allergy and Asthma Center says they've had a record number of patients come in with allergy symptoms this year.

"We're having a year that is must more formidable than most.  I'd say it's probably the worse year in a decade."

August 16th is the first day ragweed levels surge into the high count range here in Fort Wayne and further south.

"Ragweed pollen which is the number one allergy for stuff that grows, we're going into that the next three weeks."

Dr. Smits tells WFFT that ragweed and pollen levels are completely dependent on weather conditions.

"Coming out of this past winter, winter was prolonged was cool and everything so it delayed the tree pollen.  Typically, tree and grass pollen season are separate from each other but it overlapped so we had them both at once.  So we got massive amounts of allergen all at once across the region so people that suffer from allergies, no relief."

WFFT Meteorologist Andrew Logsdon says this patterns is likely to continue since we've had a cooler summer, and that is going to prolong longer into Fall as well so no relief in sight as of right now.

"One of the bigger problems is like last summer you know we had a lot of rain and it was more consistent and that rain knocks it all down out of the air, this year, all our rain has come in bunches, we've had dry spells then tons of rain at once, that's not gonna help so we have a lot of pollen and allergens just kinda floating around out here just waiting for us."

Maria Zigl has suffered from seasonal allergies her entire life.

"This year seemed pretty bad for me.  I've been having a lot of like runny nose, itchy, water eyes, itchy throat, I mean they're typical symptoms for me but they've been worse this year."

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