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Snifflin' & Sneezin': Weather kick-starting allergy season

February to April is usually peak allergy season, but warmer weather recently is likely to put an early rise to the pollen counts across the First Coast.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — A benefit of working alongside Mike Prangley is that he's a germaphobe, always wiping down and cleaning the weather center. 

That's good though because there will likely be more sniffling and sneezing going on as we move into allergy season.

Pollen count is on the rise and your allergies may be acting up soon. Peak pollen season is Feb. through April but can start as early as January. The warm weather recently is a driving factor, record warmth at the end of December and beginning of January has kick-started the season.

"Allergies are common, but anytime it's really interfering with your quality of life or you're having a tough time managing it with medication it's a definitely good idea to get in with your doctor," said Thomas Lupoli, MD., with Allergy & Asthma Specialists of North Florida.

Lupoli recommends keeping the outdoors out - closing windows in the home and car and also showering before sleeping to wash any pollen off.

Around the First Coast, tree pollen is the biggest contributor to allergy season, live oaks specifically. But with an increase in humidity and moisture, mold spores also become active.

It's also cold and flu season, so while sniffles may be allergies.. the sneezes may be a cold. It's important to pay close attention to your symptoms. If there are any body aches or fever, think cold or flu.

There's no relief from Mother Nature either, temperatures reach record levels this weekend and hold in the 80s all the way through next week.

Warmer weather is a bonus, but it may come with a few ah-choos.