Has Spring Sprung? The Pollen Seems to Think So!

The spring pollen season is here! Pollen from early trees and grasses can be seen in the low country as early as January and our pollen counter is already picking up high levels of pollen from cedar trees, alder trees, elm trees, pecan and hickory trees and low levels of grass pollen.

As we move into the end of February and March we are likely to see continued high levels of pine tree pollen along with pollen from oak trees, maple trees, and birch trees. Now is a good time to start taking allergy medication (antihistamines and nasal steroid sprays) on a regular basis every day to prevent development of severe symptoms.

At Charleston Allergy & Asthma, we count the local pollen every day and provide that to the community. We have a pollen counter called a Rotorod that stands 30 feet high outside our Summerville office. The Rotorod counts pollen by moving a slide covered in grease in the breeze for one out of every ten minutes for a 24-hour period. Each morning we remove the slide and replace it with a fresh one. The slide is stained with a mixture of dye that highlights the pollen grains, it is then carefully examined under a microscope. Individual pollens have distinctive appearances, so we can count how many of each type of plant pollen are on the slide and use a conversion factor to report the number of grains of pollen per liter of air in a 24-hour period.

The National Allergy Bureau is a nonprofit organization affiliated with the National Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology and the American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology which certifies and overseas pollen counting stations throughout the country. Charleston Allergy and Asthma is one of only three certified counting stations in South Carolina.

You can follow our local pollen counts on our website, as well as, our Facebook page. If you believe the pollen and/or other allergens are keeping you from feeling 100%, we’d be happy to get you feeling better! Reach out to us so we can get you back to feeling like yourself.

Breathe better. Feel better. Live better.

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