Dusty day wreaks havoc on allergy sufferers

Dusty day wreaks havoc on allergy sufferers

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PHOENIX -

The blowing dust kicked up by strong winds blanketed most of the valley today. All this crud in the air is causing some serious breathing problems for people like Sandy Foose.

"I have allergies and I have asthma," says Foose. "If I'm out in it - I'm going to be coughing and sneezing my little brain out."

Wind and blowing dust advisories were issued for much of central and western Arizona today, causing problems for drivers who were caught in it with visibility near zero at some points. It's also keeping allergists very busy.

"It hits your nose, it hits your lungs, it's a very large irritant effect," says Duane Wong, MD, Arizona Allergy Associates.

Dr. Duane Wong says days like this are bad not just because of the dust but also the pollen in the air this time of year.

"And so when that happens it really swirls things around and people who don't have allergies can be irritated by the dust."

Just one look at the air quality today and it's clear it wasn't the best day to be outside.

"No, of course not. It's not good for anybody," says Jason Foose.

And probably the most obvious advice today -- if you can avoid going outside, that's the best thing to do.

"This is going to make us sick and we're praying for rain tomorrow that they're forecasting, to clean it up," says Sandy Foose.

Some of the same symptoms people have during dusty days like this are just like an allergy attack. And also that pollen we talked about -- the particles can travel up to 400 miles on a windy day like this.

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