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How climate change makes allergy season longer

TORONTO –

Scientists and researchers have been raising the alarm about allergy seasons that are getting worse as a result of climate change.

Health sciences researcher and professor Cecillia Sierra Heredia from Simon Fraser University says many environmental factors, including an increase in temperature, play a role in the overproduction of pollen that causes the reaction. allergies in some people.

“It’s a complex system that combines temperature, CO2 levels and precipitation; all of these environmental factors come together and plants respond to them by starting the flower season and throwing their pollen into the air earlier and in greater amounts,” Heredia told CTV’s Your Morning on Monday.

A study from the University of Wisconsin found that, between 1990 and 2018, pollen activity increased 21% across North America, including Canada. Additionally, the researchers found that the average allergy season has extended by 20 days or more over the past three decades.

An increase in pollen isn’t the only thing that causes allergy sufferers to climb walls. Over time, wildfire season also worsens, contributing to air pollution.

“We have evidence that climate change is contributing to this worsening and creating a lot of air pollution,” says Heredia.

“So our respiratory (system) had this double whale causing air pollution with inflammation and proteins from the pollen.”

COMBINATION OF ALLERGY SEASON

Heredia says there’s still time to fight climate change by enacting local initiatives to ease the impact of allergy season for everyone, including planting more flowers and native trees. land and women.

Developing a balanced mix of female and male plants will aid in this process as female plants do not produce pollen, however, growing too many plants can become messy as they grow more fruit and seeds. .

For those who are fighting their own allergies, Heredia recommends showering before bed to remove pollen from the body, as well as keeping dirty clothes out of the bedroom. Taking the right vitamins and keeping the windows closed while inside will also aid the immune system in its fight against allergens.

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