Watch CBS News

Are allergies worse this week? Here's what to know about Boston's high pollen count

Wet and rainy year could mean a brutal allergy season in Massachusetts
Wet and rainy year could mean a brutal allergy season in Massachusetts 02:06

BOSTON - Do your allergies feel worse this week? There's a reason why - tree pollen is spiking and will be very high all week long.

Allergy report for the week of April 21. CBS Boston

Peak pollen season

April and May are peak tree pollen season in New England. Alder, juniper, and poplar trees are at their highest levels of pollen this week. This will be about as bad as it gets for tree pollen this season.

Tree pollen peaks in April and May. CBS Boston

Pollen season will dip in the summer before weed season begins in August.

Boston Pollen Count

Does it feel like your allergies are getting worse each year? There's actually a scientific reason behind that. The pollen seasons are getting longer because of climate change.

CBS Boston

As the climate gets warmer, the pollen season gets longer. Pollen season has increased by two weeks in Boston since 1970.

Allergies vs. cold

It's the age-old question: Are you actually sick, or are you having allergies? The symptoms can be very similar.

Common allergy symptoms:

  • Sneezing
  • Nasal congestion
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Watery eyes
  • Itchy throat and eyes
  • Wheezing

Pollen allergies can also aggravate asthma. 

Common cold symptoms:

  • Fever
  • Sore throat
  • Sneezing
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Cough

People with seasonal allergies will most likely not have a sore throat or cough, according to the Mayo Clinic. If you are having severe symptoms, visit your doctor. 

How to relieve allergy symptoms

Seasonal allergies can be a nuisance for millions of people. But luckily, there are a few ways to mitigate your symptoms.

  • Stay indoors, especially in the morning
  • Avoid gardening and outside chores or wear a mask
  • Shower after you go outside
  • Close doors and windows
  • Turn on your air conditioning
  • Take an over-the-counter medication
  • Rinse your sinuses with saline

If your allergies are especially bad and none of these remedies work, your doctor may recommend allergy shots. Please check with your doctor before taking any new medications. 

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.