Timothy grass is basically a forage and hay crop that is native to Asia and Europe. It has been adapted for use in North America. Take note that it is one of the various grasses that produces grass pollen which is a common allergen.
Causes of timothy grass allergy
The main source of timothy grass allergy is the pollen that it produces. It is important to note that these pollen are airborne and could not be easily seen, thus easily inhaled once present in the environment. Even though the allergy is quite common during the summer season, there is also a small chance of developing an allergy during other seasons.
Remember that grass pollen is regional and seasonal. The grass pollen count can be affected by various factors such as the weather, time of the year and the season.
Symptoms of timothy grass allergy
Just like with other allergies, the reaction of an individual depends on how his/her immune system react upon exposed to the allergen. The following are the common symptoms of a reaction:
- Runny nose
- Sneezing episodes
- Sore throat
- Itchy nose
- Puffy and itchy eyes
- Watery eyes
- Breathing difficulty
Take note that the flower of the timothy grass starts to grow in the early summer, while the flower pollinates towards the end of summer or fall. The wind transports the pollens away from the flowers and still present in the environment until fall. This is the time when most allergies are instigated. A large amount of the pollen is transported into the air during windy and hot days which is why most reactions occur during summer and fall season.
The best way to prevent the symptoms of timothy grass allergy is to avoid exposure. There are several preventive measures that you should be familiar with.
- The individual should stay indoors once the pollen count is elevated.
- Use a mask when mowing the lawn. If possible, request someone to perform this task.
- When choosing plants to be planted, opt for types of grasses that do not produce a lot of pollen. Dichondra or Irish moss can be used.
- Always keep the grass short by regular mowing.
- It is recommended to stay indoors from 5-10 AM since this is the time when the pollen count is high.
- Pets should be given regular baths since the pollen can easily cling on their fur and bring it inside the house.
- Always keep the windows in the house or vehicle closed in order to reduce exposure to pollen.
- When drying clothes, it is recommended to use a dryer. If clothes are dried outside, pollen can attach on them and spread inside the house.
Treatment for timothy grass allergy
There are various treatment options for this type of allergy to alleviate the symptoms. The commonly used treatment options include the following:
- Eye drops
- Oral or injectable steroids