Sorting out allergy facts from fiction

ATLANTA, GA (CNN) - If you're sniffling and sneezing this fall, you may be suffering from allergies. Sorting out fact from fiction is important for first-time allergy patients.

"The myth that we hear sometimes is that if you have allergies in the spring, that you will definitely develop allergies in the fall," said allergist Dr. Stanley Fineman.

But in the spring, people typically suffer from tree and grass pollen that aren't around in the fall. In the fall, weeds such as ragweed are often to blame for your sneezing and sniffling misery.

Pets, even short-haired pets, can also be a source of allergies.

"The problem is that people who are allergic to animals are allergic to their dander," Fineman said. "That's the shed skin. And even animals who don't shed have dander."

Age is also not a factor when it comes to developing allergies.

"A person can develop allergies at any age," he said. "We have people in their 40s, 50s and 60s and even 70s who come in and develop an allergy sensitivity."

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