Allergy season will be a long one in 2013

Apr 19, 2013 at 8:17 a.m. ET

Experts say this allergy season will last longer than usual. Not only that, excess pollen means a tougher season overall for allergy sufferers. Find out why, then get some tips from emergency medicine physician and TV host Dr. Travis Stork on how to treat and prevent allergies this season and beyond.

Woman sneezing outdoors

Prepare the tissues, honey, neti pot and Claritin—it’s going to be a long allergy season.

According to experts, this year’s allergy season will begin 14 days earlier and run 30 days longer than usual.

tissue box

"We're expecting to see a very robust allergy season because of a lot of precipitation during late winter and the warmer temperatures we're seeing now throughout the country," says Dr. Clifford Bassett, an allergy specialist and clinical assistant professor of medicine at the New York University School of Medicine and Langone Medical Center.

Why is this year supposed to be so tough? Extra precipitation in later winter and warmer temps are boosting tree pollen. That, along with higher-than-usual carbon dioxide emissions, will produce even more of the yellow stuff.

Dr. Travis Stork, host of The Doctorssaid that prevention is key to dealing with allergies.

"There are a lot of drug-free ways to treat allergies," he says. "But more importantly, I want you to prevent allergies."

He offers these tips:

  • Close windows.
  • Wear wide-brimmed hats.
  • Take shoes off when you get home.
  • Shower before bed.

Seasonal allergies can be worse depending on where you live, according to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America's 2013 Spring Allergy Capitals report. They say Jackson, Mississippi, will be hit hardest this year, with Chattanooga and Knoxville, Tennessee a close second and third, respectively.

Watch: Allergy Q&A with Dr. Stork

Dr. Storkanswers SheKnows' questions on treating and preventing spring allergies.

See the entire webcast here for more tips from Dr. Stork!

More on dealing with allergies

Natural ways to manage spring allergies
Getting a sneeze-free grip on seasonal allergies
What to plant if you have allergies