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Sneezing Through the Summer: When a Cold Could be Allergies

Santa Monica, CA-

With temperatures in the 80s, no one wants a runny nose and non-stop sneezing to put a damper on vacation plans and outdoor festivals. While many blame their symptoms on a summer cold, it could be something much more.


“Many people think of spring and fall as hay fever season, but allergies can also strike during the summer,” said allergist, Dr. Bernard Geller, Allergy & Clinical Immunology Medical Group. “Depending on weather patterns, allergies can be more elevated during the summer than other seasons. For example, rainfall and humidity can promote mold growth.”

The most common allergy triggers during the summer months are grass pollens and mold spores. In fact, mold can be more bothersome than pollen. Mold spores are everywhere and commonly outnumber pollen grains in the air even when the pollen season is at its worst.


Adults that have never before had allergies can fall victim this summer. This sudden case of adult-onset allergies can be easy to mistake for a cold. Allergies can often disappear within childhood but return several years later.


Cold and allergy symptoms can often mirror one another. Dr. Bernard Geller and the ACAAI have put together the following questions you can ask yourself to help rule out cold or allergies:






Summer colds and allergies might not seem serious, but they can be. Both can progress and lead to other health complications.


If symptoms are persistent, you should see a board-certified allergist for proper testing, diagnosis and treatment. While there is no cure for seasonal allergies, an allergist may prescribe immunotherapy, also known as allergy shots. This form of treatment can put you on the fast track to relief and is known to modify and prevent diseases progression.

For more information about environmental allergies or allergy testing, visit our website at, or reach us by telephone: (310)828-8534 or by e-mail:

Dora Afrahim, MPAP, PA-C

Allergy & Clinical Immunology Medical Group

Dora Afrahim, PA-C Dora Afrahim is a board-certified Physician Assistant. She received her Bachelor's degree from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and then received her Master's degree from Keck School of Medicine USC. Her training includes general medicine as well as diagnosing and developing individualized treatment plans for patients who suffer from allergies, asthma, and other disorders of the immune system. Dora is a Southern California native and was inspired to specialize in Allergy & Immunology by her desire to help improve her patient’s quality of life. In her spare time, she enjoys cycling, hiking, traveling and volunteering.

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