Nicki Nair, M.D., Allergist
Very often the winter allergies, they are not that typical where you have the sneezing, and stuff like that. They have congestion. That's when they tell you they are congested all the time, or they have drainage all the time.
In the winter the allergens essentially are the house hold pets, cats and dogs, and then the dust mites. You see we need to keep our furnaces clean and keep our furnace filters changed regularly because your furnace is blowing hot air. And your home is carpeted. The majority of homes are. Carpet is a very fertile growing ground for house's dust mites. It's just a constant there you know. And then if you have a pet there that you are allergic to and very often they will tell me that they bought hypoallergenic dogs or hypoallergenic cats. There is no such thing. You see people will spend a lot of money getting these animals from certain select breeders you see, but there is no such thing.
And then the animal often sleeps in the bed with them. The animal sits on their lap. You know, they are touching the animal. They are touching their eyes. They are touching their nose and then they get symptomatic.
Despite the snow and ice, certain allergies do not go away during the winter season. Dr. Nicki Nair, Allergist, with Boys Town National Research Hospital, explains the common allergens in the winter, what you can do to avoid them and when it's time to see an allergist.