The Japanese Weather Association has announced an increase in pollen production from cedar and cypress flowers this spring leading to a higher incidence of hay fever.
Norio Sahashi, chairman of the Palaeontological Society of Japan and director of the Association of Pollen Information, said the high temperatures, low rainfall and abundant sunshine last summer were conducive to producing abundant cedar and cypress flowers. Polled is expected to increase two to ten times more compared to last spring.
People have been advised on the Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry website to take simple preventive measures such as wearing masks as well as gargling and washing faces. Medications to ease symptoms include antihistamines, decongestants and nasal sprays are available in pharmacies that have stocked their products two weeks earlier this year.
Others have joined in with their products to help out with this seasonal affliction. Lotion-infused tissues, coats made of pollen-resistant material, and even a special website providing real-time pollen level information and suggestions on how to deal with it are in place to help people.
The weather association has asked people to prepare early for the hay fever before the pollen starts to disperse in February.