ABILENE, Texas -

Allergy sufferers met a dismal start to the work week as the cedar pollen count soared past 17,000.

The official count from Hendrick Medical Center was 17, 640. Most of this was cedar pollen.

Typical values for pollen are 1,000 or less.

Lisa Ross, a Hendrick Lab Scientist, said that the higher counts have three main contributors.

"With the dryness along with those winds that we had, that's what's really got it going. Plus, it's cedar season, so it's just all three compiled that's making it a really horrible week for people" Ross said.

If you find yourself under the weather, she has some suggestions for you.

Since pollen grains cling to your skin and clothes when you're outside, wash your sheets and bedding so you don't take it to bed.

Also shake out rugs and use over-the-counter allergy medicines to avoid congestion that could lead to an infection.

And it might just be a good idea to avoid being outdoors until this pollen count subsides.