Allergy season is here. Are you ready?

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Spring is here. Yay!

So are spring allergies. Not-so-yay.

According to the CDC, 50 million people suffer with seasonal allergies.

If you've never had that problem, that doesn't mean you won't at some point, says Candice Negrete, FNP, of St Mary's of Michigan, "Allergies change. I've read different documentation that says every 7 to 8 years that they change. So, you could be fine one year, and the next year you're miserable."

You can have seasonal allergies and not realize that is the actual problem, especially if you don't see a doctor when you have symptoms, Negrete says, "A lot of times people can't necessarily differentiate between a cold or allergies. You'll want to look for the green nasal discharge, the coughing, things like that. That's more of a cold symptom. The watery eyes, itchy nose, clear runny nose, that's more of the allergies."

Sneezing is another key allergy symptom. You can also have an itchy throat.

In Michigan, late spring is the time everything begins to bud, and itchy, sniffly and sneezy take over the body, says allergist, Dr. Stanly Fineman, "The most common allergen in the spring, first we see tree pollen and then following the tree pollen we see grass pollen. So that's usually the way the progression is."

Allergies are the 6th leading cause of chronic illness in the United States.

If you know you are destined to suffer, Negrete suggests taking action before the season gets cranking, "I say get your antihistimines started early. Take it, and be on top of it."

Check the ingredients on over the counter meds. Some allergy medicines will make you sleepy.

Negrete says other drugs might make you a little too wide awake, "If you get the ones with the decongestent in them, it definitely could."

If you take over the counter meds and they aren't really getting the job done, Negrete says, it's time to see a doctor, "By all means, see your primary care. Get a referral to an allergist. They can help you out, whether it's injections or just tweaking your meds."

If you have outdoor allergies, Negrete says there are ways to keep exposure from creeping into your house, "Close the windows, turn on the air conditioning. vacuum, keep everything nice and clean. In the car, close the windows. Put the air on. Point the vent away from your face. Those are all things that will keep those allergens away from you."

Different types of pollen peak at different times of day, which is why it's good to check pollen counts. You can do that here.

we'll have a link to the american academy of allergy, asthma and immunology's pollen counts.

once the pollen gets to flying, ahmad will also have daily updates for you, right here.

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