Saharan dust causing concerns for people with allergies

Saharan dust causing concerns for people with allergies

LOUISIANA (KPLC) - Saharan dust has been floating around in the Gulf of Mexico on and off throughout this summer season.

While it helps to prevent tropical storms due to the dryer air conditions, Keith DeSonier, Md. says it has been tough on people with allergies.

"We see an uptick in the cases here because it coincides with regular pollen. So with all the rain we've had, you may notice you are mowing your lawn more often because things are pollinating a little bit more."

DeSonier says this Saharan dust is causing a lot of people to feel stuffed up, even if you don't have allergies.

"It gets into your breathing passage and you don't see it, but it'll get into your breathing passage and that's what the nose does, the nose is a big filter. It cleans, warms, and humidifies the air that you breathe. Your lung likes really clean air."

DeSonier says contrary to the idea that the desert is barren and dry, it's full of pollen just waiting for moisture.

"Dust gets trapped up in the air, the winds blow it to a level and the wind will carry it for miles. The sand from the desert gets picked up and the heavier sand will fall to the earth and the light particles will fly until they finally stop. And so that's why we get the strange dust clouds that you see."

Thankfully, DeSonier says relief can be bought over the counter, but there is another simple way to avoid the pollen.

"One of the great things like any other dust is clean it. Wipe your face, wipe your hands, because you get the pollen and then you do that to your nose, your putting it right into your nose."

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