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Winter is the season for cozy evenings under a warm blanket, hot beverages, and fuzzy socks. It shouldn’t be a time to suffer from allergies. However, some patients find their allergy symptoms increase once the weather turns cold.

Winter allergies are an unfortunate issue for some patients. Our most recent article discussed the winter allergy triggers of dust mites and indoor pests. In today’s article, we’re diving into two additional common winter allergy triggers: mold and pet dander.


A mold allergy occurs when a patient’s immune system negatively reacts to the mold spores it encounters. When the patient inhales mold-contaminated air, their immune system responds to cause symptoms like:

  • Breathing trouble
  • Congestion
  • Excessive coughing
  • Excessive sneezing
  • Respiratory irritation
  • Sore throat

Warmer regions like Georgia see indoor and outdoor mold growth all year long, meaning patients with a mold allergy can encounter spore-filled air indoors and outdoors throughout the winter season.

Where Does Mold Grow Indoors?

Indoor mold most often grows in damp, humid areas, like:

  • Attics
  • Basements
  • Bathrooms
  • Behind refrigerators
  • Crawl spaces
  • Kitchen sinks
  • Poorly sealed windows
  • Storage rooms
  • Utility rooms

How to Treat a Mold Allergy

Although mold can grow throughout the year, there are ways to tackle your mold allergy this winter, including:

  • Indoor mold treatment
  • Dehumidifiers
  • Air quality and ventilation improvement
  • Allergy medications
  • Immunotherapy
  • Nasal irrigation techniques

Pet Dander

If a person has an allergy to dogs, cats, or possibly both, they actually have an allergy to the proteins found within the skin, saliva, and even urine of these animals. The proteins, often referred to as pet dander, are light enough to float and will pollute indoor air. As a result, patients with pet dander allergies will show symptoms if they breathe the proteins in or come in contact with them.

Whether some may only be allergic to the protein found in cats or the one found in dogs, a pet dander allergy is still a year-round trigger. Patients can experience worse symptoms in the winter when pets are inside from the cold for longer periods of time.

Pet dander symptoms can include:

  • Breathing trouble
  • Congestion
  • Coughing
  • Itchy skin
  • Red, watery eyes
  • Sneezing

How to Treat Pet Dander Allergies

Pet dander can be an issue year-round for those with indoor pets, but you can help relieve your allergies during the winter season by:

  • Creating pet-free zones throughout the house
  • Immunotherapy
  • Keeping pets off upholstered furniture
  • Routinely bathing and brushing pets
  • Routinely washing the pet’s bedding
  • Taking allergy medication

Do you suffer from winter allergies throughout the colder months? Langford Allergy can help.

Dr. Langford and our allergy specialists understand winter allergies, their triggers, and how patients can find optimal relief. Schedule an allergy consultation with our team today and begin your journey to relief all season. Call us today: 478-787-4728

Thanks for checking out our series on winter allergies. If you missed part one, check it out here:

Winter Allergies, Part 1: Dust Mites and Indoor Pests