Building Biology | Pollens
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Pollens

Pollens

The timing of your allergies may provide a guide as to what you are allergic to.

  • Spring: tree pollens
  • Summer: grass and weed pollens
  • Late summer or autumn: mould spores

Pollens are a common cause of seasonal allergies. Around 10% of flowering plants rely on the wind to carry their pollen instead of birds and insects. These plants are the ones that people with allergies are more likely to react to. Their pollen is smaller and lighter and produced in larger quantities which can be carried over long distances from their source (hundreds of kilometres in some cases). A list of wind pollinating plants can be found in the book Healthy Home, Healthy Family.

Health Concerns

Pollens may trigger hay fever, (sneezing, congestion, itchy and watery eyes and runny nose), asthma, sinus headaches and even joint pain which occur in a particular season. Symptoms maybe immediate upon exposure, or can be delayed by a few days. Contact dermatitis and eczema may also occur in some individuals.

Testing

A building biologist will be able to identify wind-pollinating plants around the site and recommend ways to reduce one’s exposure. For more detail, click here.

Solutions

  • Close windows, doors and entry points in the home on hot, dry windy days
  • Damp brush indoor pets before they enter the home
  • Do not exercise in the early morning in Spring or Summer
  • Wear glasses that wrap around your eyes
  • Plant a low allergy garden
  • Use an air filter fitted with a HEPA, UV and carbon filter (see products)