Seasonal Allergies

It is that time of year here in the Central Valley….allergy season.  Seasonal allergies are the same as what used to be referred to as “hay fever”.  At this time of the year in the greater Merced County region, there are lots of flowers making buds and trees blooming.  In addition, the agricultural fields are getting prepared for planting and there is an abundance of pollen, dust, chemicals and other particles in the air.  Grass is once again being cut and fertilized. 

All of these factors can contribute to allergy symptoms, e.g. sneezing, runny nose, nasal congestion, red eyes, coughing and sometimes wheezing.  What can you do to reduce exposure to allergy triggers?

Some experts advocate:            

  • Staying indoors on dry, windy days.
  • Best time to go outside is after a good, long rain.  Rain helps to clear pollen from the air.
  • Delegate yard work if you are prone to seasonal allergy symptoms.
  • Remove clothing worn outside before coming inside.  Keep your outdoor, gardening clothing hanging in your garage.
  • Shower (including washing hair) after doing yard work or prolonged periods outside.  
  • Don’t hang laundry outside to dry.
  • Wear a dust mask if doing outside work.


  • Check TV and radio for daily pollen counts.
  • Take your allergy meds before symptoms start.
  • Keep doors and windows closed at night.  Pollen counts are highest in early morning.
  • Use air conditioning in your home and car.
  • Use high efficiency filters at home and change them regularly.
  • Use a dehumidifier.
  • Use HEPA filters, (High Efficiency Particulate Air), especially in the bedroom(s).                 

                                                    Ask The Doctor

Question:  What is a normal blood pressure for an adult?

Answer: The adult human blood pressure is reported using numbers recorded when the blood pressure is checked.  It is reported like a fraction with a top number (systolic pressure) and a bottom number (diastolic pressure).

Please see the general guideline chart below.  In order to obtain the diagnosis of hypertension, the blood pressure needs to be checked using proper sized equipment and preferably by a trained healthcare professional, on at least three separate occasions, at least one week apart. 


Top number                                                     Bottom Number                                   Your Category                                                What to do †

(systolic)in mm Hg                                      (diastolic) in mm Hg

Below 120                                                         and Below 80                          Normal Blood pressure                        Maintain or adopt a health lifestyle.

Between 120-139                                      Between 80-89                                 Prehypertension                             Maintain or adopt a health lifestyle.                                                             
Between 140-159                                      Between 90-99                         Stage 1 hypertension                           Maintain or adopt a healthy lifestyle.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      If your blood pressure goal isn't reached                                                                                                                                                                                                                           in about a month, talk to your doctor                                                                                                                                                                                                                          about taking one or more medications.

160 or higher                                                  100 or higher                            Stage 2 hypertension                          Maintain or adopt a healthy lifestyle. Talk                                                                                                                                                                                                                        to your doctor about taking more than                                                                                                                                                                                                                        one medication.

†Note: These recommendations address high blood pressure as a single health condition. If you also have heart disease, diabetes, chronic kidney disease or certain other conditions, you may need to treat your blood pressure more aggressively.
Mayo Clinic Staff Feb. 21, 2015

The NAACP Health Newsletters

All articles of the Newsletter have been submitted by

Dr. Donald T.J. Godbold, M.D., M.S., M.B.A. and Effie Godbold, R.N., B.S.N., L.E.

Disclaimer:  “This newsletter does not constitute nor is to be construed as providing medical advice.  It is not a substitute for actual medical treatment.  Please consult your own medical doctor for on-going medical care.”

 Donald Godbold, M.D., M.S., M.B.A. is a Board Certified Emergency Physician

Effie Godbold, R.N., B.S.N., L.E. has been in the healthcare field for over 25 years.  She started her health care journey as s a volunteer in one of the busiest Chicago trauma centers, to  become a Registered Nurse and advance into nursing administration. For the past 10 years, Effie has concentrated in the field of aesthetic/cosmetic nursing. She is a licensed aesthetician. Her Mantra: "Look your Best - Feel your Best".

WIN/ Women of NAACP