The grass is turning green, flowers are starting to bloom and buds are appearing on trees. That scene either sounds like an idyllic spring day or, if you suffer from seasonal allergies, it may sound more like a bad dream.
Seasonal allergies affect 10-20 percent of the population. Also known as "hay fever," symptoms may include red itchy eyes, runny nose and sneezing.
Some allergy sufferers also experience an itchy palate, cough or wheezing. Allergies are an exaggerated response of the immune system from a foreign invader. It is an exaggerated response because to most non-allergic people the invaders are seen as harmless and trigger no response.
Fortunately, there are several over the counter allergy medications that do not cause drowsiness. Still, if you are an allergy sufferer you may want to plan ahead by reviewing the pollen forecast for your area. Several sites provide this information including The Weather Channel at http://www.weather.com/activities/health/allergies/index.html.
Keep your tissues handy this week; the tree pollen forecast is high for the Woodbridge area.