Allergy or Cold? How to Tell the Difference

An unusually high pollen count this allergy season has many confused if they are suffering from allergies or colds.

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    An unusually high pollen count this season has many Angelenos confused if they are suffering from allergies or if they're sick with a cold. Sinus surgeon Dr. Shervin Aminpour explains the difference. Kathy Vara reports for the NBC4 News at 5 p.m. on Nov. 14, 2012. (Published Wednesday, Nov. 14, 2012)

    Southern California allergy sufferers have been hit hard this fall by a pollen count that is on track to be three times higher than the seasonal normal.

    Allergy season is starting sooner and lasting longer, said sinus surgeon Dr. Shervin Aminpour. He said many sufferers are having trouble differentiating allergies from colds.

    “Normal symptoms of allergies are runny nose, watery eyes,” Dr. Aminpour told NBC4.

    Allergies normally don’t develop into headaches or fevers with nasal drainage.

    A healthier diet and an exercise program helped allergy sufferer Bella Mokovar ease her symptoms.

    “No meat, and I try and avoid sugar and white flour,” said Mokovar who suffered sleepless nights for years because of congestion, sneezing and nasal dripping.

    With flu season approaching, Dr. Aminpour suggests a visit to the doctor, if over the counter remedies do not work.