Later this week, the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America will release its 8th-annual "Allergy Capitals" list. Before it does, HuffPost Health got a preview of the 10 worst allergy spots for spring 2011.
Using pollen scores (the worst area was given a score of 100 points, and all other scores were rescaled as a relative percentage) as well as the allergy medications and allergy specialists per patient, researchers ranked the 100 largest metro areas in the U.S. to determine which spots pose the biggest problems for allergy sufferers.
"Every March, the phone calls start picking up with people wondering, 'Where can I get away from allergies?'" said Angel Waldron, a communications rep with the Asthma and Allergy Foundation. "The bad news is, there's no ideal place."
The Allergy Capitals list is intended to serve as a tool for people who can work with their physicians to devise a solid management plan.
For example, if you're heading somewhere in the Southeast this spring, Waldron said you should be aware that a high concentration of oak, maple and elm trees means the area "dominates" the top 10. Come fall, the worst spots are typically in the Northeast.
But Waldron cautioned that people should keep things in perspective.
"Don't pack up and move, because there are just different possible allergies somewhere else," Waldron said. "The best thing you can do is find out exactly what you're allergic to and then develop a good management plan."
Do you live in one of the spring hot spots? Here are some natural ways to help fight allergies.