CHICAGO (CBS) – Loyola Medicine issued Wednesday a Dangerous Air Quality Alert for the Chicago area, after an extremely high mold count was recorded.

The highest mold count of the 2016 season, with a count over 70,000 was recorded Wednesday by Joseph Leija, MD, who conducts The Gottlieb Allergy Count, the official allergy count of the Midwest.

This is the second dangerous air quality alert for mold this year, after a count of 53,000 was recorded at the beginning of September. The highest mold count in history of The Gottlieb Allergy Count was Aug. 20, 2014 with a recorded count of 82,000.

According to Gottlieb Allergy Count, an alert is issued for mold when the count is over 50,000. People with mold allergies are encouraged to stay indoors. There is also advice to run the air conditioning to filter the air or run a dehumidifier, especially if one has a basement.

People with mold allergies may experience sinus pressure, runny nose, congestion, sore throat, cough and fatigue.

Gottlieb’s Allergy Count for Wednesday stated a low grass count, a low weed count, a low ragweed count, a dormant tree count and a very high, alert mold count.

Dr. Leija measures allergy counts each weekday morning. One can find the counts on the website, or by calling the hotline: 1-866-4-POLLEN (1-866-476-5536), after 7 a.m.

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