Spring is a wonderful time of year, but for allergy sufferers it can mean several months of misery.  The main culprit is tree pollen which can fill the air and lead to runny noses, itchy eyes, coughing and wheezing.  The months of March and April are especially difficult since several kinds of trees release pollen in large amounts during this this time of year.1

Fortunately, not all trees produce pollen that can be easily dispersed by wind. Many fruit bearing trees and ornamental trees are pollinated by insects and are less problematic for those with pollen allergies.

The following chart lists the allergenic trees that cause problems for most people with an allergy to tree pollen. Clinics that offer allergy skin testing should have these and other outdoor allergens on their panel to provide a comprehensive diagnosis for pollen allergy.2

 

Tree Family Examples Primary Pollen Months
Maple Box Elder, Red Maple, Sugar Maple February - May
Oak White Oak, Red Oak, Live Oak, Beech, Chestnut March - April
Birch/Alder River Birch, Paper Birch, White Alder, Hazelnut March - April
Elm American Elm, Chinese Elm March - May
Poplar/Cottonwood White Poplar, Eastern Cottonwood, Quaking Aspen March - May
Ash/Olive White Ash, Arizona Ash, Olive, Privet April - May
Pecan/Hickory Pecan, Shagbark Hickory, Black Walnut April - June
Sycamore American Sycamore April - May
Juniper Western Juniper, Eastern Red Cedar, Mountain Cedar January - March
Mulberry Red Mulberry, White Mulberry April - May

 

If you are a patient with Spring allergy symptoms, ask your doctor if skin testing is available to determine which allergens may be causing your problems.

If you are a healthcare provider, visit our website to request more information about our simple and affordable training and start-up packages for allergy skin testing and immunotherapy.

References:

  1. www.pollen.com
  2. White, Jason F., and David I. Bernstein. "Key pollen allergens in North America." Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology91.5 (2003): 425-435.

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