CENTRAL NEW YORK (WUTR/WFXV/WPNY) – As we progress throughout spring here in CNY, warmer weather arrives but so does the pollen. Millions of Americans suffer allergy symptoms from pollen exposure though what exactly is pollen and how does it affect us?

Pollen is defined as the male fertilizing agent of flowering plants, trees, grasses, and weeds and it is transported from plant to plant by wind, birds, insects, and other animals. The spread of pollen helps to fertilize these plants though not all pollen triggers allergies. 

Pollen from plants with bright flowers, however, such as roses, usually do not trigger allergies. These large, waxy pollen are carried from plant to plant by bees and other insects. On the other hand, many trees, grasses, and low-growing weeds have small, light, dry pollen that can easily be carried by the wind. These are the pollen types that trigger allergy symptoms. 

Another factor that influences allergy symptoms is what type of pollen you may be allergic to. A high overall pollen count doesn’t always indicate a strong concentration of the specific pollen to which you’re allergic. The opposite can be true, too: The pollen count might be low, but you might find yourself around one of the pollen types that trigger your allergies.

How can you help ease your allergy symptoms? Schedule an appointment with an allergist to pinpoint which pollen types trigger your symptoms. An allergist can also help you find relief by determining which medications will work best for your set of triggers.