More generally, an allergy (allergic rhinitis) that occurs in a specific season is known as hay fever. It is faced by about 8 percent of Americans, says the American Academy of Allergy , Asthma & Immunology. When the immune system overreacts to an outdoor allergen, such as pollen, hay fever occurs. Anything that causes an allergic reaction is an allergen.
The most common allergens, such as trees , grasses, and weeds, are pollen from wind-pollenated plants. Pollen from insect-pollinated plants is too thick for a long time to remain airborne and is less likely to cause an allergic reaction. Hay fever takes its name from the season of hay-cutting. Historically, this activity happened in the summer months, with many people developing symptoms at the same time.
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