Achoo! Pollen count high locally

Published 12:39 am Saturday, March 25, 2017

The yellow sprinkles of pollen are here.

With the spring weather here, the pollen count is high.

On Friday, the pollen count was 11.2.

Rain showers are expected to make it drop to 9.5 today, or medium to high range, before increasing to 9.7, which is high range on Sunday.

It will jump to 10.4 on Monday and 10.2 on Tuesday.

According to, the top allergens are oak and elm.

Pollen can be seen on folks’ cars and on sidewalks, but also can be reason behind sneezing, stuffy noses, itchy, watery eyes and coughing as it stirs up allergies.

Pollen allergies are caused by airborne pollens, which are in the form of a very fine powder released by trees, grass and weeds as they pollinate and fertilize other plants of the same kind.

It causes inflammation and irritation in the nasal passage and symptoms include itchy watery eyes, runny nose, itchy throat, hives fatigue and irritability.

According to Dr. Bill Tillman of Tillman Family Eye Care, itchy, watery eyes are also a sign of allergies.

“While eye allergies can affect anyone, spring is especially hard on contact lens wearers,” he said. “Allergy season can make wearing them uncomfortable. Extended wear time and infrequent lens replacement are two of the main reasons contact lens wearers face more prevalent symptoms.”

Antihistamines such as Zyrtec, Allegra or Claritin are recommended, as are prescription eye drops.

Thirty-five million Americans complain from upper respiratory symptoms related to pollen, according to the National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases, which is a branch of the National Institute of Health.

To ward against pollen-related illness, follow these helpful tips:

  • extreme solution: move to a place where the offending substance does not grow;
  • remain indoors in the morning, when the outdoor pollen levels are highest;
  • sunny, windy days are usually troublesome. Wear face masks designed to filter

pollen if working outside;

  • seashore is an effective retreat for many pollen allergy sufferers;
  • mold spores are difficult to avoid. Avoid raking and mowing the lawn;
  • avoid traveling on dry windy days;
  • air out summer cabins and rooms that are closed up all winter since they contain a lot of mold spores;
  • use air conditioning and filters in the house and car; and,
  • medicines are available for people who cannot avoid airborne allergies. Check with your physician for appropriate care.