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The Connection Between Springtime Allergies and Depression

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Allergy Sufferer

Allergy season in Southwest Florida is only loosely associated with regular seasons, but suffice to say- right now many people are suffering with watery eyes, sniffly noses, and that tired, slightly out-of-it feeling that comes with feeling cruddy. But, for some the onset of allergies can come with a sidecar of depression. Research has found that people suffering from allergies are 50% more likely to also have symptoms of depression- and if a person has seen an allergist- that statistic jumps to 70%.

Is it a side effect? Or can allergies trigger a depressive response in the brain? We’re joined by Dr. Robert Pollack to explore the issue. He’s a Florida-licensed Board Certified Psychiatrist who has been in practice since 1977, and is currently the CEO of Psychiatric Associates of Southwest Florida in Fort Myers.

Rachel Iacovone is a reporter and associate producer of Gulf Coast Live for WGCU News. Rachel came to WGCU as an intern in 2016, during the presidential race. She went on to cover Florida Gulf Coast University students at President Donald Trump's inauguration on Capitol Hill and Southwest Floridians in attendance at the following day's Women's March on Washington.Rachel was first contacted by WGCU when she was managing editor of FGCU's student-run media group, Eagle News. She helped take Eagle News from a weekly newspaper to a daily online publication with TV and radio branches within two years, winning the 2016 Society of Professional Journalists Mark of Excellence Award for Best Use of Multimedia in a cross-platform series she led for National Coming Out Day. She also won the Mark of Excellence Award for Feature Writing for her five-month coverage of an FGCU student's transition from male to female.As a WGCU reporter, she produced the first radio story in WGCU's Curious Gulf Coast project, which answered the question: Does SWFL Have More Cases of Pediatric Cancer?Rachel graduated from Florida Gulf Coast University with a bachelor's degree in journalism.