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Preventing Christmas Tree Syndrome

AFC Urgent Care New Britain wants you to have a wonderful holiday season, one that does not include an allergic reaction to your Christmas tree….because that could really ruin your holiday.

Christmas Tree Syndrome is an allergic reaction to both real and fake trees.  The symptoms could be caused by factors such as  the smell of the tree and the pine resin or molds found on real Christmas trees. The signs include an itchy nose, watery eyes, chest pains and coughing, and can affect adults, children and even babies.

Experts warn that asthma sufferers should be on high alert,  as thousands of patients are admitted to hospitals every year in December as a result of mold that often grows on Christmas trees.

Most of the time mould is obvious in the home, but many people don’t realize that mold also naturally grows on Christmas trees.  This is made worse when people turn their heating on, as the warmer temperature encourages mold to grow faster.

With some simple procedures, one can prevent “Christmas tree syndrome” and have a happy holiday…with eyes wide open and without constant sniffling and sneezing.

Preventing Christmas Tree Syndrome:

For fake tree’s:

  • Be careful decorating with spray snow (aerosolized chemicals can cause reactions)
  • Properly store the tree away from dust and dirt in the off season
  • Wipe down the tree and any ornaments/decorations before putting them up

For real tree’s:

  • Avoid touching the sap with your skin (cover up with gloves and long sleeves)
  • Before bringing the tree inside: shake it out and spray  with water to help remove pollen and mold.
  • Let the tree stump rest in water and dry outdoors for a few days to prevent mold growth

If you think you or a loved one has Christmas Tree Syndrome, bring them into our New Britain AFC urgent care center where we have professionals available 7 days a week. We’re open 7 days a week, no appointment needed. Questions? Give us a call at 860-357-6899.

Merry Christmas and stay healthy!


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