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Ease your hay fever symptoms this allergy season

Hay fever symptoms

Did you know that hay fever is one of the most common allergies and affects around 13 million people in the UK alone? Early spring and summer are usually the times of year that hay fever is at its worst, mainly because of the warm and humid weather, and it’s when the pollen count reaches its highest during the year.

What is hay fever?

Hay fever, also known as allergic rhinitis, is where people are allergic to pollen (a fine powder that plants make to reproduce). The allergic reaction occurs when pollen comes into contact with either your nose, mouth, eyes or throat, this can cause a variety of symptoms for sufferers and your immune system will react against the allergens. Grass pollen is one of the most common types of allergy, but tree and weed pollen can additionally cause an allergic reaction.

Hay fever symptoms

The severity and side effects of hay fever symptoms change from person to person but often include:

  • A blocked or runny nose
  • Red, itchy eyes or watery eyes
  • Sneezing
  • Coughing
  • Itchy ears, nose, throat or mouth
  • Headache
  • Earache
  • Feeling tired
  • Can be ongoing and long term

Antihistamines are the most effective way to control the symptoms of hay fever, and these are usually available at pharmacies without a prescription, be sure to speak to a pharmacist if you have any concerns. Nasal sprays and eye drops can also help give relief for some of your symptoms. There is no cure for hay fever, but you can manage your hay fever symptoms:

  • Limit your exposure to pollen, stay indoors when the pollen count is high
  • Keep windows and doors closed
  • Keep dust at bay in your home by hoovering and dusting regularly, this helps prevent indoor allergens
  • Vaseline around your nostrils can help trap pollen
  • Wraparound sunglasses can prevent pollen from getting into your eyes
  • Change your clothes and shower after you have been outdoors to remove any pollen
  • You can also buy a pollen filter for your car air vents
  • Stop smoking. Smoking can irritate the lining of your airways and make your allergy worse.

If hay fever is affecting you servery and antihistamines have not worked, then book in to see your GP to discuss your symptoms and concerns, they may do some allergy testing and can give you some advice on how to manage hay fever.

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