Why doctor says allergies may feel 'stronger' this spring

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- Jorge Vassall has been fighting itchy eyes, sneezing and coughing.

"My car looks like a tennis ball if I left it outside, right?" he said. "I can't breathe."

His allergies are really kicking up, like those of many other people.

"Everyone's in the same boat, so good luck to everyone dealing with it," said Vassall.

Raleigh mom Johanna Burton said her daughter loves playing in Pullen Park, but a trip to the playground comes with a price.

"I'll probably be sneezing by the time we leave," said Burton.

People are searching for relief and some Triangle stores have bare shelves where allergy medication once stood.

UNC Health Allergist Dr. Edwin Kim said we are at the peak of allergy season and this year will feel more intense.

"Over the last couple years while we were wearing masks ... we probably were shielded from it," said Kim.

There are no mandates or stay-at-home orders this spring.

People are ditching the masks and are now fully exposed to all the microscopic pollens floating in the air.

It comes as COVID-19 is still circulating. The symptoms can be similar.

Kim said there is a way to distinguish.

"Allergies would not have any fever at all. So if you got that, you're really thinking this is some type of viral or COVID type of illness," said Kim.

Medical professionals say if your allergies are really acting up, try to limit time outdoors between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. when the pollen count is at its highest level.
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