UPDATED: Friday, April 13, 2012 - 8:54am
WACO -- Scratchy throat, itchy eyes and a runny nose.
All signs of an extreme allergy attack known as cedar fever.
"A type of allergy or, Rhinitis to the mountain cedar or juniper or cedar trees that are native to this area. This time of year December through March, the cedar trees have so much pollen, they re-pollinate, but there's so much pollen it's almost like smoke coming from the trees," said Lori Vicsek, nurse practitioner at Allergy and Asthma Care in Waco.
And the symptoms can be severe.
"It will eventually, if it doesn't get taken care of, go into an infection or if you do have asthma it will trigger your asthma symptoms," said Vicsek.
Doctors say you can take over-the-counter medications like Benadryl or Claritan but those will only mask the symptoms.
"They do not heal it. They will not make it go away or make your body susceptible to, uh, those triggers," said Vicsek.
So how do you get rid of cedar fever?
By building up an immunity to it.
"That's by getting tested for allergies to see if you have a severe allergy to it and then do allergy shots," said Vicsek.
Other ways to help relieve those symptoms include leaving your windows closed, making sure your air filters are clean and avoid spending a lot of time outside.