Hay Fever Symptoms and How to Combat them | Our Tips

As many of us welcome the warmer weather and longer days, a lot of us also see our hay fever symptoms returning. Hay fever is an allergic reaction to pollen and affects and causes symptoms, including:

  • Sneezing,
  • A runny or blocked nose
  • Itchy eyes, nose, throat or mouth
  • Cough
  • Headache
  • Shortness of breath or wheezing

Fortunately, there are several strategies you can implement at home to help ease these symptoms, and over the counter treatments that offer further relief are also available.

Understanding Your Triggers

Identifying what specifically triggers your hay fever symptoms is the key to treating them. Pollen is the most common cause and can vary depending on the time of year. Tree pollen is common in early spring, grass pollen in late spring and summer, and weed pollen in autumn. By knowing your triggers, you can better plan any outdoor activities around the pollen forecast, which you can find through weather reports, such as Pollen forecast – Met Office.

Preventing hay fever symptoms

Thankfully, there are many things you can do in your daily life to minimise the effects of your hay fever. Simple changes in your routine during the time of year that affects you most can bring you relief and let you enjoy the season. These changes include:

  • Keeping windows closed during high pollen counts: This keeps the pollen out of you home and provides a space where you won’t be exposed to it.
  • Using air purifiers: This keeps the indoor air clean and helps to remove any pollen that has made its way inside.
  • Applying a small amount of Vaseline around your nostrils: This can also trap pollen particles, preventing them from entering your nasal passages.
  • Regular cleaning: Ensuring a clean home means that any pollen brought in on clothes, pets and through windows is removed.
  • Showering and changing your clothes: Doing this after being outdoors can greatly reduce your exposure to any pollen lingering on you or your clothes.
  • Wear sunglasses outdoors: Help protect your eyes from pollen by blocking pollen from getting near your eyes.
  • Stay indoors: Avoiding outdoor activities during high pollen times can reduce exposure.
  • Stay hydrated and eat a healthy diet: Living a healthy lifestyle can support your immune system in combating allergy symptoms.

Treatment Options

For those seeking additional relief, or if your home remedies aren’t relieving your hay fever symptoms, various over the counter and prescription medications are available, such as:

  • Antihistamines: These help relieve sneezing, itching, and runny noses.
  • Nasal corticosteroids: These reduce inflammation and effectively treat a blocked nose.
  • Nasal decongestants: These address and reduce congestion in the sinuses.
  • Eye drops: These can also be used to soothe itchy, watery eyes.

Common Ailments Scheme

This scheme can provide you with treatments to combat your hay fever symptoms, just visit your local pharmacy and ask them for help via the Common Ailments Scheme to get free treatment and advice. Find out more about the Common Ailments Scheme here.