First week of spring, Austin family allergist weighs in

"My eyes have been watering, I've had a little scratchy throat, I'm not sure what's up but then I realized it's the second day of spring,” Shobana Ganganithi says.

On this clear and sunny Friday at the Ann and Roy Butler Hike and Bike Trail, some people with the worst allergies decided to soak up the gorgeous weather. "Springtime is kind of the big one for allergies for me. It's starting to come up and I'm definitely starting to feel it today,” adds Ryan Ivis visiting from out of town.

But braving the elements, doesn't stop them from feeling symptoms they can't shake.

Dr. Hetu Parekh with Austin Family Allergy says determining just how bad this allergy season will be in comparison to other seasons depends on what happens in the next few weeks. "Usually if it's dry and windy you'll see more pollen than if it's wet because that brings the pollen down essentially,’ the doctor says. He also says the most pollen you'll visibly see and feel in the spring is oak.

"In terms of other tree pollen we see hackberry, cottonwood, pecan tree pollen, elm tree pollen so other tree pollen but oak pollen is there for the most quantity and the most days."

He says despite grass pollen usually showing up later in the spring lately there's been an influx which means this specific type of pollen could have a worse allergy season than before. "Pollen count is usually higher in the morning so you should go for a walk or jog in the evening or keep your windows closed,” the doctor says.

And while some have their own remedies at home: 

"Honey all about the local honey, and avoid Benadryl especially if you're trying to work,” Ivis says.

Dr. Parekh says it's best to start with over the counter medicines like steroid nasal sprays, and Claritin or Zyrtec. At their office they get to the nitty gritty of symptoms - treating diagnoses with allergy shots or drops. Ganganithi says, "I have a dog and I would love to go outside with her but sometimes I feel like I need to stay inside for a day or two to clear up my sinuses before I head out again."

But before you cancel your outdoor plans Dr. Parekh says not to let spring allergies get you down in the dumps. "Don't let the allergies hamper you, because you want to be outdoors and not indoors with closed windows."

Austin family allergy has some cool tips on their website as well.