Pollen is in the air and allergy sufferers are holding up their white flags.
One local allergist is keeping up with the pollen count at his office in Macon every week to bring the most accurate forecast for Central Georgia.
At Amerson River Park, people like Donnie Sanford are hard at work.
Sanford says he works outdoors about eight to 10 hours a day and it's with every hour that his allergy symptoms accrue.
"It's getting started pretty bad, " Sanford said. "It's picking up gradually."
Now, he's picking up prescriptions.
"I did go to the doctor and get some medicine and call in a prescription to take randomly about every day," Sanford explained.
He's not alone and allergist Dr. David Plaxico says one tree is making the biggest presence now.
"That's your pine pollen there, that's the biggie," Plaxico said as he swiped up yellow dust blanketed on the lid of a recycle bin.
This pesky pollen is here to stay for the next few months.
"Usually from the end of February and into March, April, and May," Plaxico said.
Since 1981, Plaxico has been counting pollen through a low-tech, but highly efficient device at his office in Macon every week.
According to his latest data, pollen is on the rise, starting with his reading from last week.
"When I did it, it was 600. The week before that it was 320, and that was February 21, and on [February] 15, it was only 10," Plaxico said.
Those large spikes have allergy sufferers like Sanford holding up their white flags.
"There's no escaping it," Sanford said.
Plaxico says that the best advice for allergy sufferers right now is to think "triple A.”
- Avoid allergens: Pollen peaks in the morning, so if you can go out a little later, or simply keep windows up, that will help.
- Allergy medication
- Allergy shots
The pollen count for central Georgia is done weekly, and can be found on Plaxico's website. Click here to visit it.