Thursday marked the highest cedar pollen count since January 2010, and allergy sufferers were feeling the pain and misery of yellow cedar dust.
The amount of cedar pollen in the air soared to almost 3,700 grains per cubic meter Thursday.
Yellow cedar pollen comes from male cedar trees, and it makes allergy sufferers miserable.
Just as its name implies, Cedar Park has the highest cedar pollen counts in Central Texas. The ranking comes from two studies performed by KVUE meteorologists in 2009 and 2004.
Northwest Austin near Loop 360 was number two on the list.
Cedar fever symptoms include a runny nose, headache, sore throat, and sneezing.
“It feels like you are cut down inside. It's hard to breathe, and you have to have something to keep you going,” 14-year-old allergy sufferer Cameron Fisher said.
Fisher was at the Allergy and Asthma Center in North Austin to find relief.
“I found out I'm pretty much allergic to everything,” Fisher said.
Dr. Allen Lieberman blames cedar pollen for Fisher’s suffering, and Fisher is not alone.
“People are literally sneezing 40 to 50 times in a row, uncontrollably. That's what you see when the pollen counts get up to this level,” Lieberman said.
Lieberman advises allergy shots are the most effective way to fight cedar fever. He warns you must start them months before cedar season begins.
Now patients who failed to plan ahead are searching for short term help.
“We get them on allergy medicines, eye drops, nose sprays; some people even use steroids for a few days. That all works really well, but they are not good long term solutions,” said Lieberman.
Cedar season typically peaks in January and wraps up by mid February.