On days with higher temperatures, the glorious sunshine can also bring high pollen counts. For hay fever sufferers this can mean symptoms such as itchy and puffy eyes, a runny nose, headaches, a dry and itchy throat and shortness of breath. Preventative measures can be taken with an antihistamine and nasal sprays but there are other ways to help combat the effects of pollen. Take a look at these top tips to prevent hay fever from ruining your summer days.
Check the pollen count
Check the pollen count daily and on days with high pollen counts, limit time outdoors if possible. Dry, warm and windy days will spread pollen quicker as opposed to cooler and wet days, where the rain will wash pollen from the air.
Shower at night
Pollen can stick to hair and clothes, so showering and washing your hair in the evening will help get rid of the particles that you come in contact with during the day. This will help minimise hay fever disrupting your sleep as the pollen won’t end up in your bed!
Keep windows closed
Try and keep windows closed, particularly during early mornings when pollen is being released. Pollen counts are highest between 5am and 10am. This may be difficult to do especially on hot days but you can use a fan as an alternative.
Use an allergen balm
Create an allergen barrier by using a balm such as petroleum jelly or a pollen balm and apply around the edge of each nostril. This will trap and block allergens to try and prevent symptoms.
Have a cup of chamomile tea
Chamomile is a natural antihistamine so try and swap your caffeinated drink of choice with chamomile tea. Caffeine can aggravate hay fever and make you feel more fatigued.
Take a spoonful of local honey
You can try local honey from your area as the idea is to desensitise your body to the pollen, to help reduce the effects of hay fever. This can help some people with symptoms but not others however it’s worth a try, not to mention it’s deliciously sweet!
Keep pets protected too
Cats and dogs can also suffer from hay fever, with inflamed/ red eyes and a more sluggish behaviour being some of the symptoms. To help prevent this, you can wipe paws and their face after they have been outside, groom their hair with a specialist brush to remove pollen and give them regular baths.
Wear wraparound sunglasses
To prevent puffy, itchy and red eyes it’s a good idea to wear wraparound sunglasses when outdoors to keep pollen out of your eyes. These types of sunglasses will provide better protection than normal ones.
Take a trip to the coast
If you’re suffering from a particularly bad bout of hay fever, a trip to the coast might be just what you need. Pollen levels are lower at coastal areas and if you live in the city it’s a good chance to get away from air pollution that can aggravate symptoms.
Beware of high pollen counts when you put the washing out
If possible don’t hang washing outside on days when the pollen count is high. Your clothes and bedding will collect the pollen which will be brought into the home and can exacerbate hay fever symptoms.
We hope these tips will help you have a spring and summer you can enjoy. We can’t promise it will be hay fever proof but you never know some of the tips might just work for you. To clean the air in your home from chemicals found in household products, try and invest in an air-filtering houseplant. Learn more in our blog on 5 of the best air-filtering houseplants.