Itchy eyes, runny nose, sneezing...It's that time of the year when many people suffer from those symptoms.
According to Dr. Mamdouh Mickail, medical director for Morehouse Community Medical Center, pollen is the leading cause of most this discomfort.
"Pollen is everywhere this time of year and for those sensitive to it, pollen can make their lives miserable," Mickail said. "Fortunately, there are ways to avoid the pollen and still be able to leave the house."

Pollen counts usually peak between 5 a.m. and 10 a.m. Avoiding outdoor activities during those hours is one way to keep symptoms at bay. If a person must go out, Mickail advises to wear a small mask.

"Just by simply putting on a mask when working outdoors cuts down on being exposed to the pollens in the air," he said.

Other precautions include keeping windows closed on homes and cars and taking a shower as soon as coming indoors.

"Pollen has a tendency of staying in the hair, so take a shower to remove it," Mickail continued.

Dr. Mickail also advises not to dry clothes on a line and keep up with the daily pollens counts via the internet or smart phone.

For the tech-savvy, there is a website dedicated to keeping track of pollen counts as well as showing listing for pollen contributors. Go to and type in the area your are in and the site will show the pollen count for the day. The site also has an app that can be downloaded to smart phones.

The pollen count for Morehouse Parish will remain high for the rest of the week, with Saturday being very high.

There are many different types of pollen and many different trees, flowers and grass in which pollen comes from. The main pollen makers in our area include the Oak tree, Bayberry, Mulberries, Pecan trees, Ragweed, Bermuda Grass, Clustered Fescue and Perennial Rye Grass.