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05 Apr 2017

5 tips for coping with hay fever season

Find out how to beat your hay fever this spring with these simple tips.

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While many of us rejoice at the warmer weather, spring and summer can be the worst time of year for hay fever sufferers. Pollen allergies are quite common, and affect around one in five people at some point in their life. For sufferers, summer is the season of runny noses and itchy eyes- not the summer fun you were hoping for!

Sadly, there’s no cure for hayfever yet, but there are ways to relieve the symptoms so you can get on with your life and enjoy the outdoors again. The first step is to talk to your pharmacist. Over the counter medications, such as antihistamines, are very effective, but if your symptoms are particularly bad you should book a video chat with a GP who will be able to prescribe tailored medication.

Here are five top tips for hay fever season:


1. Check the pollen count
The root of your symptoms is your allergy to pollen, so avoiding coming into contact with pollen is your best bet. On days when the pollen count is particularly high, keep windows closed. You might choose to stay indoors if possible.  The count is usually highest in the morning and evening, so try and arrange your day around this if you can. (A high count is over 50 grains per cubic metre of air).


woman outside sun summer

2. Good sunglasses
Wearing a pair of wrap around sunglasses will protect your eyes from the pollen. This should stop your eyes watering when you’re outside.


3. Change clothes regularly
Every time you go outside, pollen collects on your clothes. After being outdoors, shower and wash your hair straight away to remove the pollen from your body, and change your clothing. Try and avoid drying clothes outside if you can.


4. Get a pollen filter for your car
It can be difficult to keep car windows shut during hot weather, and pollen has other ways of getting in anyway! You can buy a pollen filter to be fitted to the air vents in your car, but this needs to be changed with every service.


5. Use eye drops
One of the most frustrating symptoms of hay fever is itchy, streaming eyes. It can be impossible to get anything done at work or drive safely when pollen is wreaking havoc on your eyes. Anti-inflammatory eye drops, which are available from your local pharmacy, will help to reduce these symptoms.


If you’ve tried everything and you’re still suffering, speak to your GP. Don’t let hay fever rule your life, it’s time to enjoy the summer!

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