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Dealing With Triggers: Pollen

A variety of things in the environment can make asthma or allergy symptoms worse. These are called "triggers." Your doctor can help you figure out what your child's triggers are.

Pollen is a common trigger for many kids.

What Is Pollen?

Pollen is a fine powder that some plants make when they reproduce. During the spring, summer, and fall seasons, pollen is released into the air and picked up by the wind, which brings it to other plants to fertilize them.

Inside of these pollen grains are proteins that cause allergic reactions (such as sneezing, runny nose, and itchy eyes) when breathed in. The pollen that most people are allergic to comes from grasses, trees, and weeds.

How Can I Help My Child Deal With It?

  • Your weather forecast will give a daily pollen report. When pollen counts are high, kids should take their allergy medicine before going outdoors or avoid going outside. After playing outdoors, they should bathe and change clothes.
  • Keep windows and doors shut during pollen season.
  • Drive with the car windows shut and air conditioning on during pollen season.
  • Don't let your child mow the grass or rake leaves.
Date reviewed: August 2017

Note: All information on KidsHealth® is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.

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