Spring has sprung and on warm days thoughts turn to t-shirts, shorts, ice cream or a cold beer by the pool. However, for many people, this time of the year can be a misery: sneezing, red and streaming eyes, itchy throat, blocked or runny nose, headache, earache, congestion, feeling tired, and other symptoms associated with allergic reactions – aka, hay fever or “pollenution”.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has estimated that between 10% – 30% of the world’s population suffers from allergies caused by airborne allergens, especially younger people. That is an average of 1.5 billion people walking around with, at best, a runny nose. It is certainly not an issue to be sneezed at!
Hay fever, medically known as seasonal allergic rhinitis, is the result of our immune system’s overreaction to pollen and other airborne allergens such as fungal spores. Most people who suffer from hay fever are allergic to grass and tree pollen. People living in urban areas are at risk of even worse symptoms thanks to the combined effects of high air pollution and pollen. Hay fever can actually be worse in the city than in the countryside.
Here are 10 things you can do to limit the effects of hay fever:
- Take anti-histamine medication, use a saline nasal rinse or steroid nasal spray, and apply eye drops – you can buy all these over the counter.
- Close windows and doors to prevent pollen blowing into your home, particularly in the morning and evening when pollen counts are highest.
- Shower after going outside and at night before sleeping to remove pollen particles and other allergens from your hair and body.
- Dry clothes indoors to prevent pollen particles being blown onto them by the outside wind, sticking on and infiltrating everything from your towels to your bedding to your smalls.
- Go to our “one-stop” anti-pollution online shop to buy one of our Anti-Pollution Masks. They not only prevent nasty pollutant particles from infiltrating your lungs, but also obstruct those aggravating allergens from entering your system through your delicate airways:
- Available in multiple sizes with adjustable ear loops to ensure a tight seal.
- No more throwaways!
- Have replaceable filters that can block particles in the air of 2.5 microns in diameter – 5 μm. (Pollen is 10 microns or bigger, as is animal and human hair).
- Offer protection against pollen, spores and other allergens.
- Some models can cover up your head and neck when outside to prevent pollen particles being caught in your hair, and protect against UV radiation too.
- Come with optional exhalation valves and scented air fresheners.
- Look good! Many colours and patterns to suit every wardrobe and lifestyle.
- Smear a small amount of organic, drug free allergen barrier balm under your nose in the morning and throughout the day. It can help to trap over a third of pollen particles, dust and pet allergens before they enter the body. Popular nasal barrier balms include:
Both products suitable for the whole family, including pregnant and breastfeeding women, men and children.
- Invest in a pair of wraparound sunglasses and keep them on-hand so you can prevent pollen from getting in your eyes.
- According the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the air inside a home could be just as polluted as outdoors. Consider using an air filter/purifier with a HEPA (High Efficiency Particle Arresting) filter to capture the pollen and dust particles, and cool and circulate the air. Endorsed are:
- Vacuum the house regularly (especially beds and fabrics) to remove pollen particles. Suggested:
- Keep car windows closed when you are driving and fit a car pollen filter, such as:
Note: It is crucial you find the right size for your car make, model and year before you buy.
Please do not hesitate to contact us if you need any more information about these anti-pollution products listed above, or if we can help in any way with limiting the effects of your hay fever.