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Update: Tree pollen triggers seasonal allergies | Weather

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Update: Tree pollen triggers seasonal allergies
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LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) -   March is definitely roaring in like a lion for allergy sufferers. Recent temperature fluctuations have caused pollen spurs to release ahead of schedule. Most of that pollen originates in south Texas.

Allergy Specialist, Dr. Gene France says winds from the south are driving pollen counts up. He says, "The pollen from south Texas comes with the airflow. So, we've had cedar counts of a thousand count. Which is very high for cedar in Arkansas."

At the Little Rock Allergy and Asthma Clinic, patients are tested to find out exactly what allergen is causing their symptoms. Allergens cause your body to release histamines. For many patients, like David Morse says their only relief is regular allergy shots.

Morse says, "It's hard to do a lot of activities outside, even 30 minutes to an hour, I can start feeling the effects for several days afterwards if I don't have the shots."

Dr. France says those who have seasonal allergies have a variety of symptoms. "Typically, the allergic patient is going to have the eye symptoms, the nose symptoms. Even itchiness of their throat and itchiness of their ears sometimes."

After a quick test, where small amounts of common allergens are placed under the skin allergy specialists are able to determine exactly what allergen is causing the patient problems.  To combat the symptoms that come along with allergy season, Dr. France recommends a long-acting antihistamine.

He explains, "Over the counter preparations. There are very good ones out. The Zyrtec type, the Claritin type and now Allegra is over the counter just this past week."

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