Outdoor Allergens and Asthma

Seasonal Allergies

The warmer months mean more hours of daylight and seasonal allergies. Seasonal allergies can happen to you without your knowing why or how. Allergens cause allergic reactions that contribute to your seasonal allergies. When you inhale an allergen  1, your responses start in your nose. Your nasal passages become inflamed, and you experience one or more of these symptoms:

  • Sneezing 
  • Wheezing 
  • Itchy nose 
  • Nasal blockage
  • Nasal secretions 


Pollen is the most common outdoor allergen and the leading cause of seasonal allergens. It is a powdery substance produced by trees, grass, and even flowers. Providers consider pollen an allergic asthma trigger because your body goes through the same process to rid itself of the foreign substance. Your body does this by producing histamines. Histamines are inflammatory responses that cause symptoms like mucus production, muscle tightness, and fast heart rates.

Is Pollen Your Trigger?

If you answer yes to any of these questions, pollen is likely one of your asthma triggers.

  • Does your asthma change with the temperature?
  • Is your asthma more difficult to manage when the weather is warm?
  • Do you live in an area with high pollen concentrations and have trouble breathing?
  • Do you notice your asthma symptoms are better indoors?

Protect Yourself against Pollen

  • Stay indoors
  • Wear protective masks and eyewear, like glasses or sunglasses when outdoors
  • Vacuum with a high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter to trap pollen particles
  • Opt for using an air conditioner to a fan to cool down your space
  • Reduce indoor carpeting as much as possible


The grass is another outdoor allergen that triggers your asthma. Grasses contain allergens that burst and become airborne when it gets moist, through rain or moisture in the air. The grass affects everyone differently. Some people have reactions from sitting on or cutting the grass, while others react from a work-related exposure 2.

The amount of time it takes for your body to react to your grass allergy varies. Some of you will have mild asthma symptoms, while others have life-threatening reactions. Being aware of your asthma triggers allows you to avoid life-threatening reactions and better manage your health. 

Manage Your Grass Allergy

  • Avoid grasses if you have a known allergen 3.
  • Wear protection, like glasses and masks 
  • Use your asthma medications as prescribed.