Pollen count in TokyoIt’s already March and things are starting to look a lot like spring. The sun is out, the birds are back, and those dead hunks of wood are starting to look a little more like trees. Sunny skies are here again and everyone seems to have a pep back in their step… except for those with allergies.

Now, let’s be honest, for those who suffer from hay fever, spring is a b*tch. Excuse the profanity, but hay fever sufferers know that the coming of spring signals itchy eyes, piles of tissues, and all around unpleasantness. If you have hay fever and were thinking about visiting Tokyo, think again; this weekend’s pollen levels are literally off the charts.

If you take a look at the pollen density map created by the Tokyo Metropolitan Institute of Public Health, there was already a considerable amount of pollen flying around all over Tokyo during this past week. In the Tama area of western Tokyo, the map is completely red.

 ▼  Tama area on March 8 at 1pm…it’s completely red!  There aren’t even any gaps!Pollen count in Tokyo2

Looking at the entire Tokyo metropolitan area, there seems to be high concentrations of pollen everywhere, especially in Akiruno City, Hachioji City, and Tachikawa City. In some areas, the pollen density reaches and at some points exceeds the graph’s limit of 4,000 parts per cubic meter.

 ▼ Tokyo Metropolitan area on March 9 at 3pm.Pollen count in Tokyo4

▼ Forecast for Tokyo Metropolitan area on March 10 at 2pm.Pollen count in Tokyo5

▼ Pollen levels in Aoume City on March 8. At 1 a.m. and again at 4 a.m., the pollen count reached the upper limit of the graph at 4,000 parts per cubic meter.
Pollen count in Tokyo3

A hay fever sufferer in Tokyo had this to say: “This is awful. My eyes are watery, my throat hurts… I’m so run down, I feel like I’m going to die.” Unfortunately for our Tokyo hay fever sufferer, it was just reported that the levels of pollen during this weekend alone will exceed that of the entire year of 2012. Hay fever sufferers, take care and try to be strong, it’s only going to get worse this weekend.
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