03/19/2012 02:29 EDT | Updated 03/19/2012 09:34 EDT

Allergy Season 101: 15 Exotic Allergies To Normal Things


It may feel like spring for a lot of us, but we're not quite out of the trenches when it comes to sniffles. Flu and cold season may be over, but allergy season is just beginning -- and this year it may be coming sooner than normal.

Meteorologists suspect the early arrival of allergy season due in part to one of the mildest winters the continent's seen in recent memory. The warmer temperatures and unseasonal highs means an earlier pollentation season for many allergy-causing plants like ragweed.

But for those allergic to mould, the lack of cumulating snowfall this winter means allergy sufferers can breathe a bit easier, says Stuart Carr, president of the Canadian Society of Allergy and Clinical Immunology.

"When we have an unseasonably warm winter where we have a less persistent snow cover, there's less mould in the spring," Carr said. "So it should actually be a better early spring for certain allergy sufferers."

The warmer temperatures are also a blessing for Colleen Seto, who lives with cold urticaria -- an allergy to cold temperatures. But this isn't the kind of allergy that involves, sneezing and watery eyes, rather Steo's skin would break out into hives at the slightest touch of anything cold.

Steo, a resident of Calgary, told the Toronto Star that the rare allergy has kept her from many winter activities.

"As I got older, I could have gone (skiing or snowboarding) on my own, and I just never did because I steered away from winter activities outdoors,” said Seto.

Think your allergies are bad? Here are 15 exotic allergies to things that are certainly nothing to sneeze at:

Photo gallery 15 Weird Allergies You've Probably Never Heard Of See Gallery