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What to Expect
After Wet Winter

What to Expect After Wet Winter

It is particularly fundamental that the general public must be aware of what will happen after a wet winter and to have them be prepared for the negative aspects of that moisture. Aside from expecting more and more flooding, the Allergy Center of Missouri forecasts a worse season for allergies. It is due to the high amount of moisture that may be present during this time of year and the possible growth of more molds and even toxic mold spores.

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When to Expect Intense Allergies?

COLUMBIA — Allergy season is here again, and experts are saying this year might be worse than usual for allergy sufferers.

Alvis Barrier, co-director of MU’s ENT and Allergy Center of Missouri, said allergy predictions are made based on the amount of wetness in the ground. When there is a lot of water and flooding, moisture seeps deep into the soil.

This excess moisture is “good for the environment, not so good for the allergies,” said Shawna Strickland, clinical assistant professor at the MU School of Health Professions.

It allows plants and trees to grow more, but that growth leads to more pollens and molds, two main causes of spring allergies.

This year was wetter than last year, so as much or more pollen and mold bloom are expected — and last year was the worst spring season in 37 years, Barrier said.

The bad allergy seasons are not a trend, Barrier said — just related to the wetness.

“These are two very exceptionally wet years,” he said.

If next year is dry, he said, allergy season will be less intense.

More pollen and mold do not increase the number of people with allergies because allergies are genetic, Barrier said. However, it will increase the intensity of symptoms for people who already experience them.