HOUSTON (FOX 26) - The Houston area took a financial hit with the damage Tropical Storm Imelda caused. Now, it seems the aftermath is also wreaking havoc on people’s health.
So if your eyes have been itchy, watery, and you need to keep the box of tissues handy, you’re not alone. There are plenty of others feeling your pain, and heading to their doctors because of allergies.
“All of that dust up over the past two to three days when we had the tropical system just stand, it made more people sick, and more people come in,” says Dr. Carlos Vital. “So that causes inflammation, and allergies, and rashes, and bronchitis and asthma and things of that nature.”
It is no wonder his office sees about a 30 percent increase in calls and patient visits, like Glenda Martinez.
“You feel coming on like a sinus infection. A lot of itchy of the throat, ears, watery eyes, coughing. The asthma symptoms start coming up,” she says.
You also want to be cautious if your home was affected by the storm, because it’s not just the mold you need to worry about.
Vital says, “So the increase of insects, you get the microscopic insects, which is the dust mites. So, the increase in dust mites and the increase of all that activity and cockroaches can cause you to have increase antigens, which can lead to more inflammation and more exacerbations of eczema or allergic issues.”
Over-the-counter remedies can take care of many allergy issues, so make sure you have all your allergy medication filled, and packed in plastic bags before a weather event. Also, Dr. Vital warns that if you are experiencing shortness of breath, hives or itching over a large section of your body you should seek medical attention.