Pollen Allergy

What is it?

Pollen is the most common outdoor allergen.  It is a fine powder that comes from trees, grasses, weeds, and flowers.  Pollen is spread from plant to plant by the wind and birds.  People become sensitive or allergic to pollen from contact with the lining of their nose, mouth, eyes, and respiratory tract.  Sensitive individuals get allergy symptoms when they come into contact with these pollens.

What causes it?

Most trees release their pollen in the late winter and early spring.  In the Southeastern U.S., tree pollen season can begin as early as January.  Contrary to popular belief, it is typically not the trees with large, colorful flowers that cause allergy, but more often those trees with smaller more inconspicuous flowers.  Some of these allergy-causing trees include:

Ash, Aspen, Beech, Birch, Box Elder and other maples, Cedar, Cottonwood, Elm, Mulberry, Oak, and Willow.

Most grasses release their pollen in the late spring and early summer. Grasses tend to release more pollen when they grow.  An exception to this is Bermuda grass, which will release pollen even when kept very short.  Grasses most likely to cause allergy symptoms include:

Bermuda, Johnson, Kentucky Bluegrass, Orchard, Redtop, Rye, Sweet Vernal, and Timothy.

Most weeds release their pollen in the late summer and fall.  Although ragweed pollen is the most well-known culprit for causing allergy and asthma symptoms, there are other allergy-provoking weeds.  These include:

Burning Bush (also known as kochia, Mexican fireweed, summer cypress), Cocklebur, Lamb’s Quarter, Pigweed, Plantain, Red (sheep) Sorrel, Russian Thistle, Sagebrush, Mugwort, Scales (atriplex), and Tumbleweeds.

Treatment for pollen allergy typically involves a combination of avoidance measures, medications, and/or allergy injections. Allergy injections work by “desensitizing” the immune system to allergens and have been shown to be extremely successful in the treatment of pollen allergy. But if you suffer from allergies, it is best to make an appointment with a board-certified allergist so they can come up with a plan for you.


We’d love to meet with you to address your allergy concerns.



Doctors Building, Suite 215
500 S. University Avenue
Little Rock, Arkansas 72205


Clinic Office: 501-420-1085
Fax: 501-420-1457


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