Grass fires triggering allergies for Green Country

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Reported by: Farron Salley
Updated: 2/18 6:27 pm Published: 2/18 3:07 pm

Strong winds ignite more than just grass fires -- they’re triggering allergies for people across Green Country.

“I can’t breathe and it’s like my throat's itchy and I feel congested, head congested, nose congested and a lot of itchiness,” said Shakera McCarrell.

She said being outside the last few days she can tell the difference in her allergies. She wasn’t the only one.

FOX23 talked to allergy specialist Dr. James Love.

“They’re sensitive to not only things they’re allergic to that make them sneeze but also things that irritate them,” he said.

But he said irritation from smoke can be a red flag for something else.

“Some people with allergies walk around with a little bit of hidden asthma, so if your chest is getting really tight during this smoky season, maybe you do have a little asthma and you need to talk to your doctor about it,” he said.

There are some simple ways to get some relief from allergy issues.

“It seems kind of strange but there’s all sort of salt water preparations that you could use to clean out your nose, from a simple spray to a big bottle that goes in one side and out the other,” said Love.

But Love reminded the first line of defense is to avoid the allergy trigger completely, something people like McCarell try desperately hard to do.

“(I) try and stay inside, stay out the way, inside unless it’s a doctor's appointment or something business-like,” she said.

When the smoke clears, spring pollen is on the way, so knowing what triggers your allergies is something to find out soon because the strong winds will keep blowing cinders and everything else around.

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The views expressed here do not necessarily represent those of KOKI FOX23 - Tulsa

Mayor Maynot - 2/18/2014 6:14 PM
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I guess if you are sensitive to smoke (every/any ash tray could offend) would there be pollen on the wind from a fire. Sounds fishy to me.
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