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'Pollen tsunami' only getting worse in New Jersey

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By Tim Darragh | NJ Advance Media for Email the author | Follow on Twitter on May 11, 2015 at 11:33 AM, updated May 11, 2015 at 11:35 AM

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The map for pollen counts for May 11, 2015.

There's one thing to know if you live in Newark -- or just about any area in New Jersey for the next few days: If you suffer from allergies to tree pollen, you might want to stay indoors.

The 2015 pollen tsunami is bad and will get worse this week, according to

Newark unfortunately made a Top Five ranking among American cities for the worst pollen counts of the day.

Newark placed fourth on the list, according to The city scored 10.3 -- a measurement of grains of pollen per cubic meter of air. The score also takes into account weather and wind, putting together all the factors that make springtime so difficult for allergy sufferers, according to IMS Health of Plymouth Meeting, Pa, which publishes

It's not unusual for pollen to be bad this time of year -- it is, after all, the Garden State -- but that doesn't make it any easier for those with runny noses and swollen, watery eyes.

Unfortunately, it is predicted to get worse. In a change from last week, the forecast for Newark indicates that pollen counts will rise the next two days, peaking on Wednesday at 11.5. Things are predicted to ease a bit beginning Thursday.

It's no better anywhere else in New Jersey, according to, either. So follow the usual practices for reducing your pollen exposure: Stay indoors and keep the windows closed. Wipe off your clothing and pets before coming inside. Use a nasal spray or irrigation to clear the pollen out. Wash your hair before going to bed.

The other alternative is to go to Duluth, Minn., where the pollen count will be a breathable 0.5 parts per cubic meter today.

Tim Darragh may be reached
at Follow him on Twitter @timdarragh. Find on Facebook

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Dr. Leonard Bielory says spring allergy sufferers will find that the pollen season will begin this week in New Jersey. (Tim Darragh | NJ Advance Media for


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