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September 20, 2013

Health Talk to focus on sinus, allergy woes

THOMASVILLE — Fall means football, the fresh smell of fallen leaves — and the return of allergy season.

If you're waking up with a scratchy throat and itchy, watery eyes, fall allergies may be to blame. Allergies occur when the body's immune system overreacts to a substance that generally doesn't bother other people. And though experts say ragweed is the biggest allergy trigger in the fall, mold and dust mites are also common allergy triggers that can cause problems for allergy sufferers this season.

 "Ragweed usually starts releasing pollen in August, and it can last into September and October," said Archbold ENT Lorraine Williams, MD. "An interesting fact is about three-quarters of people who are allergic to spring plants are also allergic to ragweed and will experience allergy attacks in the fall, too.”

 Williams said, “Damp piles of leaves are ideal breeding grounds for mold spores which can trigger sneezes, wheezes, runny noses and other allergy symptoms. Dust mites can also trigger allergy attacks the first time you turn on the heat in the fall or when you unbox those cool weather clothes that have been stored for the last few months.”

 But not only do allergy sufferers struggle from nose congestion, headaches, sneezing and a sore throat, if left untreated allergies can eventually lead to sever sinus problems and even sleep disorders and fatigue.

 "Allergy and sinus problems can affect your overall health," said Williams, "If you suffer from allergies, it's important to see an ENT and allergy specialist to get the symptoms under control. You don’t have to suffer from allergies and sinus problems. There are many treatments available that work wonderfully."

 As part of Archbold Memorial Hospital’s continuing Health Talk free community lecture series,Williams  will present, “Relief from Allergy and Sinus Pain” on Tuesday.  The talk is offered free as a clinical outreach effort to uphold Archbold’s core value of Community Benefit.

Williams will discuss symptoms associated with sinus and allergy problems, as well as the latest medical treatments and minimally invasive sinus surgery options available, including Image-guided sinus surgery and Balloon Sinuplasty. 

Williams is board certified in otolaryngology and practices at the Archbold Ear Nose Throat and Allergy Center. To learn more about allergy and sinus problems, please attend this Health Talk. The lecture will begin at 6 p.m. and be held in the Williams Auditorium East Tower at Archbold Memorial Hospital. Dinner will be served. Pre-registration is requested; call 229-227-5140 or visit www.archbold.org.

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