Austin and the surrounding Hill Country are well known for the mountain cedar tree which is known to cause Cedar Fever for many residents. The offending tree is actually a type of Juniper called Juniperus ashei. Cedar Fever is an allergic reaction to pollen from this Juniper tree. This tree has an aggressive seasonal bloom, and it is known for its spikey pollen. Under a microscope, the pollen looks like tiny grass burrs, which tend to stick to hair, eyebrows, eyelashes, nose hairs, clothing and pets. Cedar Fever is most common in December and January when the pollen counts are at their peak, but cases have been known to begin earlier and last through March. The airborne pollen granules may travel hundreds of miles, affecting Austin allergy sufferers, friends, and family all over Texas.
A few of the common symptoms include runny nose, itchy and watery eyes, nasal and sinus congestion and sneezing. Some sufferers also complain of fatigue, headache, facial discomfort, sore throat, partial loss of smell and the sensation of ear plugging. Some have mild symptoms, but for some, the symptoms can be so severe, they actually leave the area if they can.
Many are thrilled with this result, especially since this is not always the reason they initially sought care in our office. This all happens via the central nervous system which includes the brain and spinal cord. When a person is subluxated (misaligned), the nervous system is irritated, and out of balance. This irritation can cause sympathetic dominance which excites the immune system to overreact to the pollen. And cedar is more aggressive than most of the tree allergens. So, the good news is that chiropractic adjustments can really help! The earlier one seeks care, the better. When you are in a full-blown episode, it is more difficult to calm the body down.
Building your immune system: Eat clean and healthy, more vegetables and fruits. Eat less processed foods. Avoid sugar. Supplement with Echinacea, vitamin C, turmeric, ginger, and Omega-3 Fatty Acids (fish oil), and probiotics. We also carry a Cedar Serum made by BioStar which can really help you desensitize your overreaction to cedar. You want to start with this in November, if possible. It’s never too late, but it pays to start early, and not when you are having a full-blown reaction.
During cedar season, you want to mechanically clean your surroundings of pollen: Change air filters, preferably with HEPA filters, and vacuum frequently. Whenever you come inside, rinse your face with cool water, and wipe your hair with a wet towel to remove whatever pollen you can. Don’t forget to wipe your pets off with a damp towel after they have been outside. Use a Neti Pot to rinse the pollen from your nasal passages and sinuses. When you are home and know you won’t be going out again, shower and change clothes to get the pollen off of you. Change pillowcases regularly so you don’t put your face in pollen from your hair.
“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” is as true today as it was when Benjamin Franklin first made the quote. Start early to get the best results.
Who do you know that could benefit from chiropractic care? Mention this blog for your complimentary consultation and exam ($75 value!) to see if chiropractic can help you!* Call us today at (512) 346-3536 or request an appointment here.
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