Christmas season is a time of lights, ornaments, parties and of course, Christmas trees. Many people experience Christmas tree allergy symptoms like sneezing, congestion and itching when they put up the tree. But it’s not tree pollen which irritates allergy sufferers (Tree pollen season is mainly during spring – at least in the North East), but primarily mold. So bringing a live Christmas Tree into the house increases mold counts significantly. But even artificial Christmas Trees can induce allergy attacks in sensitized individuals by harboring dust mite and mold depending on storage conditions. So here are the suggestions on how to reduce allergen exposure while still enjoying a Christmas Tree:
- Mold allergic individuals may want to consider getting an artificial tree, which has to be stored in a dry place. If it is taken out of storage, dust should be cleaned off as well as possible.
- If you buy a real tree, keep it in the garage for a few days and shake it off well before bringing it into the house to reduce mold counts.
- Keep ornaments in plastic boxes in a dry place to reduce mold and dust mite growth.
With these few simple changes, Christmas may be much more tolerable for allergy sufferers.
For more information check out ACB news and information from the ACAAI website.