Around 18 million of us are suffering from one allergy in particular at this time of year. Hay fever affects millions of people in the UK and can be debilitating. Nearly a quarter (22%) of sufferers class their hay fever as severe and persistent.
All allergic diseases are on the rise due to the changes in the way our immune systems respond to what should be normally harmless substances. This is due to the increasing lack of exposure over decades to the normal bacteria that live in the environment and stimulates our immune systems to fight disease, together with other environmental and physical interactions.
Allergy UK has the following advice to help keep hay fever symptoms under control:
- Apply an effective pollen barrier around the edge of each nostril to trap or block pollens.
- If you have been outside, avoid bringing pollen into the bedroom so that you get a good night’s sleep. Get undressed as soon as you come in the door, have a shower and wash your hair to remove all traces of pollen. Don’t hang your washing out first thing in the morning or at dusk as there is always more pollen in the air at these times and it will settle on your washing
- Using a seawater nasal spray to clean nasal passages and wash-out mucus from blocked noses and sinuses can provide temporary relief and prime the nose for treatment
- If you usually use a nasal spray for your hay fever make sure that you start using it a couple of weeks before symptoms usually start
- Always take your antihistamines regularly during the hay fever season, not just on a sunny day. Although there tends to be less pollen about on a rainy day, you should still keep taking your medication as this gives the best control for your symptoms
- Wraparound sunglasses will help stop allergens getting in your eyes
- If you need to get away from it all, choose a holiday destination near the sea to lessen the effects as sea breezes blow pollen inland, a holiday by the beach will lessen the effects
Allergy UK are here to advise and support those with allergies and intolerances. Please call us on 01322 619898 or visit www.allergyuk.org for more information.