Best apps for tracking pollen counts

Spring is a beautiful time of year. The snow has all melted, the sun warms the Earth, trees start to bud, and flowers start to bloom. Sounds absolutely wonderful doesn't it? Unfortunately, for people with allergies, spring is often the worst time of year.

As the plants begin to grow, pollen, spores, and dust gets kicked into the air causing a lot of trouble for people with sensitive sinuses. If you have from allergies — mild or severe — you likely know its best to keep an eye on the pollen counts in the spring and summer. Here are my favorite apps that can keep you in the know!

Zyrtec AllergyCast

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Zyrtec is one of the most popular over-the-counter antihistamines on the market, so it has a vested interest in making sure that its users know how bad pollen is outside so they know if and how much allergy medication they need to take. AllergyCast is a vivid app, bathed in the color corresponding with today's allergy forecast, which most days is going to be bright goldenrod. You can see which pollens are highest at the moment and the overall allergy forecast.

You can also track your allergy symptoms day to day, if you need to track them for your immunologist. As this app is made and maintained by Zyrtec, there is, of course, an entire section about their allergy products to help ease your suffering. That said, it's fairly easy to avoid looking at their products, their logos in the app are mostly small, and the app is responsive and quick, though the allergy forecast could use a bit more precision.

Free - Download Now

WebMD Allegry

WebMD can be a blessing or a curse depending on how fanatically you search it trying to match your symptoms, but their allergy app is blessedly easy to use and should keep the hypochondriacs among us from breathing any harder than our allergies already do. The WebMD allergy app has a general breakdown of allergies that are in the air today, but lacks future forecasting. There is a nice map that will show allergy severity county by county in an easy to use map.

What it lacks in forecasting, it makes up in explanations and literature. This makes sense: after all, WebMD is a medical database full of explanations for symptoms and diseases. If you scroll through the app for more than a minute, you'll be treated with links for a dozen allergy related articles and entries. If you need more information about allergies, this app has it for you. If you want to know what allergies are going to do for the next week, you'll want to keep moving.

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For people that suffer from allergies, WeatherBug is a great source of news on the subject. In addition to providing daily, hourly, and 10-day forecasts, it details the pollen index for the day, including which allergy triggers are the predominant.

Plus, for a weather app, it also has a fantastic connected-home feature that lets you connect your Nest, Honeywell, or SmartThings hub for a detailed analysis of your energy consumption. Even if you don't have a connected thermostat, you can figure your daily costs based on weather conditions, average electricity and gas costs, and what your HVAC is set to.

If you struggle with allergies and have some smart home automation hooked up to your HVAC system, WeatherBug can kill three birds with one stone.

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Poncho: Wake Up Weather

Poncho: Wake Up Weather aims to be the weather app that makes you feel good in the morning, even if the forecast is a little frightening. It's brightly-colored design and happy little weather-cat are definitely a cute way to get your daily forecast.

Each day Poncho will give you a quick rundown of the high and low temperature for the day with a short but sweet little paragraph. You can scroll down to see more information like an hourly breakdown of the temperature, wind speed, UV index, and a 5-day forecast. Poncho also includes a hair forecast, which is basically a more fun way to receive the humidity percentage. I'm sure those with hair that likes to frizz up in moisture will appreciate Poncho's hair-related information.

Poncho does offer a very basic pollen count with its daily forecasts represent by three levels, low, moderate, and high. Although Poncho doesn't offer the most detail pollen forecast, its one of the best weather apps for the Apple Watch. If you have an Apple Watch, Poncho is worth a look!

Free - Download Now

Which apps do you use?

How do you keep on top of your allergies? Let us know in the comments below.

Luke Filipowicz
Staff Writer

Luke Filipowicz has been a writer at iMore, covering Apple for nearly a decade now. He writes a lot about Apple Watch and iPad but covers the iPhone and Mac as well. He often describes himself as an "Apple user on a budget" and firmly believes that great technology can be affordable if you know where to look. Luke also heads up the iMore Show — a weekly podcast focusing on Apple news, rumors, and products but likes to have some fun along the way. 

Luke knows he spends more time on Twitter than he probably should, so feel free to follow him or give him a shout on social media @LukeFilipowicz.