Hay fever is the common name for allergic rhinitis. It is an allergic reaction to allergens or ‘triggers ‘. When an allergen is breathed in, there is an immune response in the lining of the nose resulting in the nasal passages becoming swollen and inflamed. Allergens can also cause an reaction in the throat and eyes. Hay fever commonly occurs in spring and summer when it is caused by airborne pollens from plants, trees and grasses. Some people may suffer from hay fever all year when allergens such as animal dander, mould spores and dust mites are inhaled. If you are unsure as to what is the trigger for your hay fever, your doctor can conduct allergy skin tests to help pinpoint the cause of your allergic rhinitis.
The symptoms of hay fever include sneezing, runny nose, blocked nose, itchy nose, ears mouth or throat, mucus in throat, decreased sense of smell and taste and swollen, red, itchy eyes.
Hay fever symptoms are often worse in the morning and on windy days as the level of airborne pollen are highest at these times.
Sufferers of hay fever should identify and avoid exposure to allergens that trigger a reaction. This can be done by staying indoors when pollen count is high, keep windows closed during pollen season, cleaning the house regularly to remove dust and mould, use of low allergy bedding products, keeping pets outdoors and removing any triggers such as plants.
Your local Caremore pharmacist can assist you in selecting the best non-prescription medicine to relieve the symptoms of hay fever and prevent them from recurring.