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Seasonal Allergies: symptoms and causes

Apr 25, 2024 | The Healthy Way Newsletter

Every year we wait for the arrival of a warm and gentle spring, which will erase the memories of the exhausting winter months. It is a time of hopes and new plans, long walks in the evenings and feelings emerging in the heart. But for many of us, the arrival of spring brings along seasonal allergies. These allergies can be set off by various allergens such as pollen and mold spores. Moreover, sudden temperature fluctuations during the spring season can boost the production of pollen and mould, resulting in exacerbated allergy symptoms.

What Are Seasonal Allergies?

Allergies are the body’s defensive reaction to environmental elements, foods, and other substances perceived as threats, known as allergens. When an allergen is detected by the immune system, antibodies are produced to eliminate it. This process triggers the release of histamine and other chemicals into the bloodstream, leading to tissue inflammation and bothersome symptoms.

Seasonal allergies, also known as allergic rhinitis or hay fever, are respiratory allergies that typically occur during specific seasons like spring, summer, and fall. According to Asthma Canada, one in five Canadians experiences seasonal allergies. Therefore, adopting natural methods to alleviate unpleasant symptoms can help a significant portion of the population avoid relying on medications like Benadryl.


Symptoms of seasonal allergies include congestion, coughing, post-nasal drip, itchy and watery eyes, scratchy nose, ears, and throat, sinus pressure, a runny or stuffy nose, and persistent sneezing. Additionally, seasonal allergies can trigger asthma-related symptoms such as chest tightness, wheezing, and shortness of breath.

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The causes of seasonal allergies are linked to increased exposure to seasonal allergens like pollen and mold

Pollen, which is released by trees, grasses, flowers, and weeds, is a common allergen that can induce hay fever. Different types of pollen are prevalent during various seasons, with tree pollen being prominent in spring, grass pollen in summer, and ragweed pollen peaking in late summer and fall. Weather conditions play a significant role in pollen production, with warm, dry, and windy days typically having the highest pollen counts. 

Mold is another prevalent allergen that can trigger allergy symptoms in the spring. Mold spores are minuscule airborne particles produced by molds growing on damp surfaces like soil, leaves, and decaying plant matter. Warmer temperatures and increased humidity levels in spring create ideal conditions for mold growth, leading to the release of mold spores into the air when disturbed by factors such as wind, rain, or temperature fluctuations.

Environmental allergens that may be present all year long include:

  • Animal dander
  • Dust mites
  • Pollutants and irritants (e.g., smoke, gases)
  • Scents or fragrances

What allergens are currently present in Toronto?

Sudden temperature changes can create optimal conditions for mold growth. For instance, when warm and cold air collides, condensation forms on surfaces, fostering dampness and mould development. Furthermore, fluctuating temperatures can result in increased moisture accumulation in existing mold-infested areas, leading to heightened spore release into the atmosphere.

Before embarking on a weekend camping excursion or a leisurely afternoon in the park, don’t forget to check Toronto’s Allergy Outlook to stay informed about potential allergen exposure.

That’s not all! Is there a connection between allergies and hormones? How are birch pollen and carrot allergies related? Don’t forget to subscribe to the weekly newsletter so you don’t miss my next article.

About Me

I'm Dr. Elena Krasnov, N.D and I've been healing people for decades with my holistic and comprehensive approach to health.

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