As pollen from the Texas Hill Country becomes airborne, it often blows to our region as a result of south or southwest wind. Mountain Cedar season starts in December and continues throughout February.
On days of high pollen counts, many cedar allergic people can’t go outdoors without experiencing severe symptoms such as nasal congestion, runny nose, watery eyes, itchy throat and eyes, and wheezing. Pollen also tends to provoke asthma symptoms. These symptoms are a reaction to pollen produced by the Ashe Juniper tree, commonly known as mountain cedar.
The following are recommendations from the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, and Children’s Health to help you prevent cedar fever symptoms.
Avoid yard work if your allergies are flared up
Wash your clothes after being outside
Bathe after coming in from outside
Keep doors and windows closed
Use a HEPA (high-efficiency particulate) air filter in your home
For nasal congestion relief, flush sinuses with a nasal rinse
It is important to know that even if you see a high pollen count predicted in the news, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you will be affected. Often symptoms of an allergy-driven illness can commonly be confused with the flu. According to Austin Public Health, what makes the flu different are chills, a cough or sore throat, body aches, fatigue and in some cases fever.
Visit your healthcare provider to get tested for allergies and to develop a treatment plan.