Facts, Prevention, and Relief for North Carolina Allergies

Updated
Updated

North Carolina is a beautiful state with plenty of beaches, nature, and city life to enjoy. But with the beauty of nature comes pollen, which means allergies. North Carolina has generally mild winters, which means outdoor allergens can often be a year-round issue for residents.

Of course, the allergens of mold, dust, and pollution will play a part in causing allergies in North Carolina. But for seasonal allergies, it’s good to know which pollen is in the air and when. That way you can avoid your specific allergen triggers.

Wyndly can help by creating a personalized treatment plan for your North Carolina allergies. Get started with Wyndly today, or read on to learn more about North Carolina allergy season.

When Is North Carolina Allergy Season?

North Carolina isn’t a stranger to frosty winters, but the temperatures don’t dip below freezing very often. When temperatures are mild, plants may begin producing pollen sooner in spring and could release pollen longer in fall. With that being said, allergy season in North Carolina will generally end sometime in November, when the first frost hits. It can pick back up in February if conditions allow. Let’s take a closer look at North Carolina allergies by season.

Allergens by Season

Each season in North Carolina has its primary allergens. The season you experience the most symptoms will depend on when your allergens are in season.

Summer

Grass pollen in North Carolina causes the most problems in summer. The season will typically last from the end of spring to early fall. Although grass is a summer allergy, the pollen counts tend to peak in May. Bermuda, zoysia, ryegrass, and fescue are the most common grass allergies in North Carolina.

Fall

In fall, ragweed is one of the most common allergens. The ragweed season will typically begin in late summer and go until the first frost. The season usually peaks in September.

Winter

Though winters may be milder than in some other states, they still are capable of creating a frost. When this happens, pollen sufferers in North Carolina can breathe easily for a bit.

Spring

Once spring comes around, the trees will start releasing pollen. Generally, residents can expect this allergy season to begin in March and go until June. The peak of the season is April. The tree pollens that pose the biggest problems for residents tend to be river birch, hickory, oak, American beech, and yellow poplar.

Common Allergens

The most common allergens in North Carolina are shared by many other states. Grass, weeds, and tree pollen are the biggest offenders. Other indoor allergens like mold, dust, and pet dander also play a role in causing allergy issues.

Common Symptoms

North Carolina residents can expect to experience several common allergy symptoms, including:

  • Runny nose
  • Coughing
  • Congestion
  • Sneezing
  • Headaches
  • Scratchy throat
  • Itchy eyes
  • Watery eyes
  • Hives
  • Asthma symptoms

As always, reactions will vary from person to person, but in general, allergies will cause one or more of these symptoms to occur.

Allergens Around the State

Airborne allergens will be prevalent throughout the state of North Carolina. However, the plant species will vary based on region, causing different parts of the state to have diverse allergen profiles. Let’s take a look at what allergens are the most prevalent in the larger cities.

Asheville/Boone

The Asheville/Boone area will start their pollen troubles in spring, with oak, walnut, willow, and maple trees causing the worst allergies. In summer, grass takes over — namely Bermuda, fescue, and rye. For fall, ragweed is the main allergen.

Charlotte/Hickory/Greensboro

The Charlotte/Hickory/Greensboro area can expect birch, oak, and mulberry tree pollen in the springtime. For summer, Bermuda, fescue, and timothy cause the most issues. Finally, fall brings ragweed and marsh elder allergies.

Raleigh/Durham

The Raleigh/Durham area will experience tree pollen allergies in spring from mulberry, oak, and hickory trees. In summer, the grass allergies include Bermuda, bent, and sweet vernal. In fall, ragweed is once again the primary allergen.

Fayetteville/Pinehurst

For Fayetteville/Pinehurst, oak, ash, and cedar are primary tree pollen producers. For grass in summer, there’s Bermuda, timothy, and bent. In fall, ragweed is the main issue.

Greeneville/Wilmington/Jacksonville

The Greeneville/Wilmington/Jacksonville areas count oak, hickory, and birch tree pollen as their worst spring allergens. In summer, the grass allergens include Bermuda and bent. In fall, it’s ragweed and marsh elder.

Southeast allergen zone map

Testing and Diagnosis

Since the allergy seasons can easily intersect, it can be pretty difficult to determine the exact source of your pollen allergies. Fortunately, an allergy test can help. With a convenient and pain-free at-home test from Wyndly, you don’t even need a doctor’s appointment. Get your at-home allergy test now to find out what your triggers are.

This is how different allergy testing options work:

Old-Fashioned Method: Skin Prick Test at Your Doctor’s Office

Skin prick testing requires you to go to the doctor to find out your allergen triggers. It’s often uncomfortable, and it takes time out of your day. You’ll go to the doctor’s office, they’ll administer a test where they prick or scrape your skin with a needle tipped with different allergens, and then they’ll observe the areas they pricked for itchiness, redness, or swelling. All in all, it’s not a pleasant experience. Instead, you can save yourself time and pain by getting an at-home test.

Modern and Efficient At-Home Method

  1. Order Wyndly’s at-home allergy test. We ship our CLIA-certified test straight to your door.
  2. Take the allergy test and send it back to us. Just do a quick finger prick test to provide us with a blood sample and mail it back when you’re done.
  3. Receive your allergy profile. Our doctor will interpret your results, create an allergy profile, and walk you through a treatment plan.

Treatment and Remedies

If you have allergies, there are various treatments and remedies you can try to relieve your symptoms. The following are some common methods.

Limit Exposure

Limiting exposure can help relieve symptoms and make it so allergen levels aren’t high in your home environment. If you want to reduce the level of pollen you’re exposed to, you’ll have to take certain measures and make lifestyle changes.

  • Watch the pollen count: When the pollen count is high, your allergies will be worse. Make sure to check the pollen count before heading out. If it’s high, stay indoors as much as you can. Also, wearing an N95 mask and sunglasses can reduce your overall exposure when you do have to leave the house.
  • Vacuum frequently: A HEPA filter vacuum can help you remove pollen from your floor and carpets.
  • Take showers after being outside: If you’ve been outside all day, washing your hair and body can help get the pollen off you.
  • Use your A/C: Keeping windows closed and using air conditioning with a HEPA filter can keep pollen levels in your home at a minimum.
  • Wash clothes often: Pollen is sticky and will get on your clothes. Washing them often is a good idea during allergy season.
  • Avoid outdoor activity in the morning: Pollen counts tend to peak in the morning, so try to do your necessary outdoor activities later in the day.

Medication

When limiting your exposure isn’t doing enough for your symptoms, you can try over-the-counter allergy medications. Antihistamines, nasal sprays, eye drops, and decongestants can help you find short-term relief. You can to try prescription medications if recommended by your doctor, but these treatments only provide short-term allergy relief.

Sublingual Immunotherapy Allergy Drops

Medications and limiting your exposure only go so far. If you want to fix your symptoms instead of just managing them, sublingual immunotherapy allergy drops may be your answer. Immunotherapy introduces small, gradually increasing doses of your allergen to train your immune system to ignore the substance instead of responding with an allergic reaction. Allergy drops are safe, effective, and pain-free, and unlike allergy shots, they don’t require frequent visits to the doctor.

Get Long-Term Relief With Wyndly

If you’re looking for long-term relief from your allergies, Wyndly can help. Our doctors will create a personalized treatment plan for your North Carolina allergies.

Get your personalized treatment plan now to start your journey to lifelong relief!

North Carolina Allergy FAQs

Here are some frequently asked questions about North Carolina allergies.

How long is North Carolina’s allergy season?

Typically it lasts from early spring to the first frost of winter.

Why is allergy season so bad in North Carolina?

The milder climate makes allergy season start sooner and last longer. There is also a diverse array of highly allergenic plant life.

Is North Carolina a good state if you have allergies?

North Carolina has made various lists of best and worst places to live for allergies, depending on the city. In general, the wet climate and cold winters do help to keep pollen levels down better than drier climates.

When is the North Carolina allergy season?

The North Carolina allergy season is from late February to early November.

What are the worst months?

The worst months are May for grass allergies, April for trees, and September for weeds.

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