2020 may be worse than usual for allergy sufferers in NJ
It appears tree pollen is more eager than usual to make you start your annual allergy suffering. Even mild sufferers could have it bad in 2020.
According to information released Tuesday afternoon, pollen counts have gotten quite the head start in the Garden State. Spring doesn't officially hit until March 19, but there's been activity in the air for about a month now — about a week or two earlier than what's typically been measured over the past three decades by allergy specialist Dr. Leonard Bielory.
"We've had a moist winter without the snow, but we've had nice warm temperatures. The third factor is really the amount of sunlight that these plants detect," said Bielory, professor of Medicine, Allergy, Immunology and Ophthalmology at the Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine at Seton Hall University.
And based on the projected weather for New Jersey, pollen counts could double, triple or even quadruple over the next two to three weeks, Bielory said.
"It will be more intense and more problematic for those who are even mild allergy sufferers, because they're going to have a longer time of exposure," he said.
The AccuPollen Allergy Tracker mobile app, created by Bielory, has "already seen species of tree pollen hit triple digits" this year, he said.
For those interested in lessening the impact of pollen allergies, Bielory advises minimizing outdoor activity when counts are high — peak pollen times typically land between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Residents are also encouraged to dry laundry indoors, wear a mask when doing lawn work, and close house windows on days when pollen counts are high.
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