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2018 05 dust stormDust blows across fields in southeastern ManitobaPeople with spring allergies might have a watery-eyed month ahead of them.

Southern Health Chief Medical Officer Dr. Denis Fortier said the current environmental conditions in Southern Manitoba aren't helping.

"The dry conditions, along with the wind, pick up all of those allergens, those things that people are allergic to, they put them into the air and it travels around and gets into our face, into our houses," he explained.

Dr. Fortier's best advice is to stay away from seasonal triggers. This can be tough, as it generally means staying inside and away from the dust.

"If you are someone who does suffer from seasonal allergies or asthma... you want to try to reduce your exposure as much as possible, especially if you know what those things are," said Fortier.

"If you know that you have allergies related to the pollens that are out there, then, of course, you'd want to stay out of the environment as much as possible, stay indoors as much as possible during those times until the first rainfall, that usually helps a little bit," he added.

If dust and pollens trigger allergies, he says getting your air conditioners and filters cleaned could help.

He added it's always about trying to prevent, mitigate, or stay away from triggers.

"For allergies, there are products out there, over the counter products that help with the symptoms, because now you're faced with having the reaction to allergies and really all you can do now is treat the reaction or treat the symptoms," said Fortier.

The good news is that seasonal allergies are, usually, seasonal.

"Usually it is temporary, it's for a couple of weeks or maybe a couple of months... spring is a bad time because all of those allergens have been dormant under the snow, as the snow melts and things dry off and the wind starts blowing things around, it just really exposes us."

 

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