New study finds longer allergy seasons in Reno

Allergy season increase among the biggest in the country.
Published: May. 22, 2023 at 11:07 PM PDT
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RENO, Nev. (KOLO) - It’s been a tough spring so far for people with allergies, especially here in the Biggest Little City.

The Weather Channel shows Reno’s risk of allergy symptoms is in the high range, with that trend expected to continue until at least the beginning of June.

“That’s when tree and grass pollens often overlap,” said Devon Preston, an allergist with Cleveland Clinic. “That’s also when we tend to have our drier, windier weather, which means pollen can travel in the air more easily.”

A recent study from Climate Central found that not only are there more allergens in the air, the allergy season is getting longer. That study also found Reno’s allergy season increased by 99 days, one of the biggest increases in the nation.

Experts say allergens are worse this year because plants have had more time to flower and release pollen, thanks to the longer periods of freeze-free days here in the west. Still, there are some steps you can take that may help.

“We all love to open our windows and let the fresh air in, but keeping your windows closed can help prevent pollen from entering your home,” said Preston. “I recommend people use their HVAC system, if they have one, to help filter the air in the home. If you have pets that go outside, brush them off before they come back inside, because pollens can collect on their fur. It’s also a good idea to keep pets out of your bedroom.”

Some over the counter allergy meds can also help.

“Claritin, Zyrtec and Allegra, those are three very good ones,” said Candi Silvola, a pharmacist with Aspirus Health System. “Claritin and Allegra won’t make you tired, but with Zyrtec, there is a possibility, so I normally recommend taking that at bedtime.”

You can learn more about the study here.