Is it a cold or cedar allergy?
Many people believe they have a cold when their symptoms are actually an allergic reaction to increased cedar pollen in the air. And cedar trees, abundant across Austin and central Texas, are the culprit.
What is a Cedar Tree? During the winter, many of the trees that are still green across Austin and central texas are the cedar trees. Cedar trees are part of the Evergreen family of trees, which typically stay green during colder months, while most other trees lose their leaves. Plus, cedar trees have small cones, and when the weather conditions are just right, typically peaking in January, the male cedar trees release pollen. The wind, not bees, carries the tree pollen into the air, and thus wreaks havoc upon people who have an allergy to cedar. Many people mistake these allergies as a cold or flu.
How can you tell if it’s a cold, the flu or allergies?
Here’s the breakdown according to Dr. Lieberman
1. The Common Cold. If you have a cold, you will usually have nasal congestion, a runny nose, you’ll be sneezing, have a sore or scratchy throat, and possibly have a postnasal drip, a cough, a headache, and a fever.
2. Influenza or “The Flu”. If you are hit with the flu, you possibly could have a runny nose, you’re likely sneezing, coughing, and have a sore or scratchy throat. You also may have difficulty with breathing, experience a headache, have body aches, chills, are fatigued, possibly be nauseous and/or vomiting, and have a fever.
3. Cedar Allergy or Cedar “Fever”. You’ll know you’ve got allergies if you have itchy, tearing eyes. You’ll have a runny nose and are sneezing and generally feel “itchy”. Sometimes allergy sufferers may have clogged ears, nasal congestion, a cough, a sore or scratchy throat, a headache, and feel fatigue. Typically, there is no fever experienced with allergies. With allergies, you’ll feel better inside and feel worse when being outdoors.
If you are not sure if you have allergies or the cold or flu, contact Austin Family Allergy & Asthma, where same day and next day appointments are often available, and book a time for an assessment with our board-certified allergists, Allen K Lieberman, MD.