The Met Office has warned people to be prepared for the start of the hay fever season as the beginning of spring approaches. As we move into sunnier climes, those with pollen allergies may be itching at the ready, to avoid the outdoors, the Mirror reports.
And as ‘pollen season’ takes a hold, it is grass pollen that causes months of misery for those with this allergy. One in four people suffer from hay fever in the UK, which equates to around 16 million.
A spokesperson from the Met Office said: “Tree pollen occurs first, typically from late March to mid-May, and affects around 25 per cent of people. Most people are allergic to grass pollen (which actually has two peaks) and the season lasts from mid-May until July. Weed pollen can be released at any time but the season typically covers the end of June to September.”
Depending on where you live in the UK, you might get away with a shorter hay fever season. Those in the south will see their agony start earlier, due to warmer temperatures and slightly less rainfall.
But if you know you struggle with tree pollen, now is the time to prepare and get your supplies ready. While you can’t prevent a reaction, you can keep the symptoms under control using over the counter drugs.
Many people report a scratchy throat or runny nose as the most common or only symptom they have. So if you don’t usually suffer from hay fever, or you want to be sure what you might have, it’s best to take a Covid test too..
How to ease hay fever
1. Shower and change clothes after being outdoors
Pollen gets everywhere.. After a day outside, jump in the shower, or bath, and change your clothes to prevent the pollen clinging to you and furniture indoors.
2. Apply petroleum gel just under the nose
Dab a little Vaseline, around the nostrils before you head out.
3. Wear wraparound sunglasses
This is a suitably stylish way of keeping pesky pollen powder out of your eyes.
4. Keep it clean
Regularly wash your hands when out and about to remove pollen and avoid rubbing it further into your eyes or nose.
5. Dry your laundry inside
If you suffer from hay fever, it’s better to dry your laundry inside so that it won’t catch any pollen outside.
6. Keep pets clean
Try a pet friendly shampoo on days when the pollen count is high to keep your animals free of plant particles.
7. Create an on-the-go first aid kit
Pick up some products at the chemist to keep your symptoms in check. If you’re struggling with a blocked, itchy or runny nose, a steroid nasal spray might provide you with some extra relief. They work by reducing the inflammation inside the nose.