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The worst allergies in Tampa

Having an allergy means that your body’s immune system sees harmless substances like pet dander, mold, or plant pollen as a threat similar to a bacteria or virus. Antibodies then take defensive action against the allergen, creating your allergy symptoms.

Because it is a humid, subtropical climate, the area around Tampa, Florida, is home to many allergen-producing plants. Some allergens may be present in the Tampa are a year-round. In fact, Pollen.com has called Tampa one of the worst cities for people who have allergies!

Most Common Allergies in Tampa

Tampa’s environment allows many different types of allergenic trees and other plants to thrive.

Tree Allergies

Most trees trigger allergies by producing pollen that depends on wind to spread and fertilize other plants.

Bayberry season typically runs from March to early July, peaking in April and May. These trees create pollen that is spread by the wind, aggravating allergies. Though the fruit of the bayberry is prized for its scent, many people are sensitive to the smell.

Oak season starts in February and lasts through July, with the worst months being April, May, and June. These types of trees often cause the yellow-green dust you may find covering cars, outdoor furniture, grills, and playground equipment.

Cypress is another abundant allergen in the Tampa area, as these trees can be abundant in Florida. The allergen-producing period is February through May, but is at its worst in March and April.

Queen palm trees are common in Florida, where their pollen can cause allergies most of the year. These trees usually bloom between the months of January and June.

Maple trees are potentially allergenic, especially those that depend on the wind to carry their pollen. Box elder, one of the most allergenic types of maple, begins flowering in the spring.

Other Plant Allergies

Trees can be a major source of allergy-triggering pollen in Tampa, but many people are allergic to other types of plants that produce pollen in the area.

Melaleuca is a type of evergreen plant in the myrtle family that can grow as a small shrub or to the size of a tree. These are popular garden plants in tropical areas. Its season runs most of the year, from February through September, but the worst of it usually lasts April through July.

Grass tends to cause allergic reactions in the summer in most areas, though in Tampa it can trigger allergies from March into October. Late April to early July tends to be the worst times.

Ragweed and other weed pollen are strongest in the fall, peaking in August through October in Tampa. However, it may start to become present as early as April and last into December.

Mold Spore Allergies

Mold spores area common allergen, but they are produced by only a few types of mold out of the many species of fungi that exist. Mold spores are present throughout the year,but tend to peak in two periods in Tampa: February through April, and August to October.

Are Tampa Allergies Bothering You?

Allergy symptoms can mimic the common cold or flu, which can make it difficult to tell whether you have allergies or a virus.

Common symptoms include:

●       Runny nose or nasal congestion

●       Scratchy throat

●       Fatigue or difficulty sleeping

●       Coughing or wheezing 

Some allergy symptoms that are less common in colds and flu include:

●       Itchy, stinging, and watery eyes

●       Hives or rash where your skin came in contact with the allergen

●       Dry, scaly skin

●       Symptoms that change based on your surroundings

 

Not sure if your symptoms are allergies, cold, or flu? Check out our guide to help you tell the difference.

Tips to Control Your Allergies in Tampa

●       Use an app or website to check and track the pollen count in Tampa

●       If you are outside for awhile, remove shoes when coming home, and change your clothes immediately

●       Keep doors and windows closed during high pollen counts

●       Make sure to change the air filters of your home every season

●       Discourage mold and other allergens by using a dehumidifier to keep humidity below 50%.

●       If you have pets that come in and out of the house, give them a bath at least once a week

●       Don’t bring backpacks and other bags into the bedroom from outside

●       Pollen counts are the highest between 5-10 am, so limit your outside exposure during these times, especially when it is warm and dry

●       Wash rugs, curtains, and bedding regularly, and consider using wood or tile instead of indoor carpet

 

Allergies shouldn’t keep you from loving where you live! The specialists at Aspire Allergy & Sinus Center are highly trained in testing, diagnosing, and treating allergies. Instead of relying on over-the-counter medications that don’t offer long-term solutions, request an appointment today to come talk to one of our knowledgeable staff!

Rochelle Hastings, PA-C

Rochelle graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a degree in Sports Medicine. After several years working with athletes at various universities, she decided to pursue a Master of Clinical Medical Science/Physician Assistant studies graduating in 2012 from Barry University. She enjoys being able to improve people's lives, which is one of the aspects she loves about working at Aspire Allergy & Sinus. Rochelle has lived in Palm Harbor, Florida since 2005 with her husband and two children and loves everything outdoors including boating, beaches and biking. She’s passionate about treating patients that suffer from allergies and those struggling with sinus problems so that they can enjoy the outdoors as well.

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