Back to school asthma

Written by Monday, 11 September 2017 17:49

Summer is just about over.  Everyone in the family has hopefully been healthy, but now it’s back to school.  About 2-3 weeks after the summer school break ends there is always a big increase in children’s asthma symptom, and emergency room visits.  In the northern hemisphere (such as the USA, Canada, and Europe) it’s known as the “September Spike”.  It occurs earlier or later depending on when school reopens, but typically 2-3 weeks after the first day of school. In Australia and New Zealand, it happens after the Christmas break (which is the end of their summer recess).

The BUZZ about bee allergies

Written by Tuesday, 18 July 2017 19:37

Knowing where to look for bees and what to look for if you are stung can help avoid some of the fear of bee allergy.bee 1

Where are bees found?

Honey bee nests are in tree hollows and old logs and generally they only sting when provoked. They usually leave in the stinger with the attached venom sac (although some yellow jackets also can leave their stinger).

Yellow jackets build nests in the ground, so you’re likely to see them when doing yard work, farming and gardening.

Hornets build large nests in trees and shrubs. 

Wasps build honey combed nests in shrubs and under the eaves of homes and barns.

Yellow jackets, hornets and wasps are scavengers, often found at outdoor events where there is food or garbage and are more aggressive than honey bees. 

What type of reactions can happen when stung?

Thunderstorm Asthma

Written by Wednesday, 07 June 2017 19:16

Although not frequent, severe springtime thunderstorms have been linked to asthma attack epidemics. Last year, more than 8,500 patients overwhelmed hospitals and emergency personnel during a thunderstorm on November 21 (Australia’s springtime) in Melbourne.

So, what happens during a thunderstom that causes asthma to get so bad?

We all look forward to the springtime and want to open the windows and be outdoors, but for people with allergies, spring is a mixed blessing, and can mean feeling miserable. However, there are steps you can take to better enjoy this time of year.

What plants pollinate in the spring?

Some of the trees start pollinating in early March, so even if the snow is still on the ground, there can be tree pollen in the air.  By mid to late April, when the weather is dry and the wind is blowing, tree pollen counts can be quite high.  Trees continue to pollinate through June. The grass generally starts pollinating in mid to late May, but unlike the trees, the grass can pollinate even in April if nighttime temperatures are above 50 degrees.  For people who are allergic to both trees and grass, the worst time is usually from mid May through mid to late June because both tree and grass pollen counts are quite high.