SALT LAKE CITY — There's no escaping allergies.
"It used to be that people would go to Arizona, but then they took their trees there as well and it was all over," said Dr. Craig Moffat, a board-certified allergist with Intermountain Healthcare's Alta View Hospital and the Intermountain Sandy Clinic. "There is no way to avoid pollens."
Moffat said research has traced certain pollens to more than 300 miles from where they started, even over then ocean. "They're rather ubiquitous," he said.
The only place he guessed might be free of abundant allergens, would be polar areas.
"There is really no safe area," Moffat said. Doctors don't recommend moving to avoid allergies, but rather offer methods to treat them.
"Eventually, wherever you go, you will develop sensitivity to the pollens that are prevalent in the area," said Dr. Charles Rogers, a board-certified allergist and owner of Allergy Associates of Utah.
Rogers, who also works at the Intermountain Medical Center, said certain allergens exist in Utah that may not be found elsewhere. Within the state, however, there are anomalies, as the climates dictate what grows where.
"Allergies and asthma tend to be worse on dry, windy days," he said. "Weather conditions certainly impact pollination."
Peak pollen times are early morning and at sunset, when trees seem to release the greatest percentage of their pollen.
Rogers said a common misconception in Utah involves complaints of Cottonwood pollens when seed pods are visibly flying in the air. He said by the time the seed remnants are airborne, tree pollen counts are down, and it is actually grass pollens that are bothering people.
Rogers and Moffat will be featured on Saturday's Deseret News/Intermountain Healthcare Health Hotline, where they will take questions regarding allergies. Individuals are welcome to call 1-800-925-8177 between 10 a.m. and noon, or post questions on the Deseret News' Facebook page, www.facebook.com/desnews.