ATLANTA -- The very thing that makes Atlanta enjoyable to most who live here can also make it miserable to others.
"I can feel my eyes itch a little bit my eyes watering; it's hard to breathe," said Alex Kimbrell, who, along with his girlfriend, was among hundreds taking in an outdoor jazz concert in Centennial Olympic Park.
The warm weather and green spaces are enough to trigger the allergies that can also trigger asthma. The breathing ailment affects one in 12 people, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Add in pollution from the metro's notorious traffic, and that palpable haze in the air can easily mean a trip to the hospital for those who are very sensitive. In fact, nearly 10 people a day die from asthma in the United States.
"The symptoms of asthma include a chest tightness," said Dr. Alan Redding of the Redding Allergy and Asthma Center in Atlanta. "A feeling like you can't inhale all of your air or exhale all of your air. Also shortness of breath, wheezing."
While the traditional medications do a good job at controlling symptoms, clinics like Dr. Redding's offer new tests to detect just how bad you have asthma and "rush" immunotherapy that can reduce months of allergy shots into a matter of days.
"The inhaled steroids, the long acting bronchial dilators, even some injectable medications, and allergy shots are all extremely useful," said Dr. Redding. "So nobody should have to be walking around having symptoms."