From late summer to early fall, weeds emerge, bloom and release their pollen into the air. Not only is ragweed pollen one of the worst culprits for hay fever allergies, but it’s getting stronger and growing longer across the U.S. Avoid muddling through end-of-summer picnics and crisp fall walks. Here’s the lowdown on this sneaky allergy troublemaker.
What Is Ragweed?
Ragweed is a member of the daisy family and has tiny yellow-green flowers that produce vast amounts of pollen – about a million grains per plant, every single day.
Where Does Ragweed Grow?
Ragweed is found in fields, gardens, roadsides and waste areas all over the U.S., but it is the biggest problem in the East and Midwest.
When Does Ragweed Bloom?
Ragweed grows from August to November, peaking mid-September and ending with the first frost. However, if you get allergies from ragweed, you might have noticed your symptoms are lasting longer every year.
How Does Ragweed Pollen Move?
Ragweed pollen grains are so light that they can travel up to 400 miles in the wind. This means that when it comes to ragweed spreading across the country, the sky’s the limit.
Why Does Ragweed Pollen Cause Allergic Reactions?
People with allergies might have more sensitive immune systems that fight allergens, thinking they’re harmful foreign substances, such as viruses or bacteria. When you have a ragweed allergy and breathe in the pollen, your body defends itself against the invader (even though it might be harmless), and the reaction leads to allergy symptoms.
Ragweed Allergy Symptoms
The most common ragweed allergy symptom is a stuffy or runny nose, but you also might experience sneezing, itchy eyes, watery eyes and other common allergy symptoms.
Ragweed Allergy Treatment
- Stay one step ahead of ragweed. ZYRTEC® ALLERGYCAST® app shows you what pollen is in the air with the daily pollen forecast and you can track your allergy symptoms, too. Standard data rates for your plan apply.
- Cover up. When outside, wear hats, gloves, glasses, paper masks and long-sleeve shirts to prevent contact with ragweed and other pollens.
- Remove your shoes. Kick your shoes off before entering your home to avoid tracking ragweed and other pollens inside.
- Take a shower. After long periods outdoors, showering will help remove ragweed and other pollens from your skin and hair.
- Try an antihistamine. ZYRTEC® is a common antihistamine that helps relieve your worst ragweed allergy symptoms. It starts working at hour 1 and stays strong day after day. Learn more about the ZYRTEC® family of products.