MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - Spring is just around the corner, which means pollen season is in full swing and many can already feel it in the air.
For allergy sufferers out there, chances are you’ve probably had a pack of tissues nearby at all times.
You’ve probably also seen your car covered in a yellow film of pollen and we can thank our pine trees for that.
Doctors, however, said it’s the pollen you can’t see that causes more problems from oak, walnut and other nut trees.
Weather plays a major factor in the pollen counts. First Alert Chief Meteorologist Jamie Arnold said the highest pollen counts come on warm, breezy, dry days.
Dr. Mark Schecker, a local allergist, said allergies can really impact anyone. Some key symptoms are: sneezing; itchy, watery eyes; a runny, stuffy nose; and coughing.
There are ways people can help keep those symptoms away. The most obvious is to limit time spent outdoors.
Also, if you can, try to keep your windows closed and run an air conditioner.
Those who have been outdoors for an extended period of time should change their clothes and rinse off.
Schecker recommends over-the-counter medications to start off with, but if things get bad, it’s time to go see a doctor. He said being proactive now could save you in the long run.
“If you don’t treat them and these symptoms persist, it can lead to other things like infections of the sinuses or the ears. It can trigger other respiratory problems, particularly if you are at risk or prone to have asthma; it certainly can flare that up,” Schecker said.
Doctors said it’s difficult to predict how severe pollen season will be and because South Carolina has such a mild climate, pollen can really be seen at any time of the year, depending on the conditions.
Certain times of the day are worse than others. According to doctors, the highest pollen levels come around mid-day and the lowest are around sunrise and sunset.