Hay fever sufferers don’t need a calendar to know when it’s spring time. We usually work it out when our eyes and throat get itchy, we start sneezing a lot, our nose turns into a runny tap and we get shouted at for stealing all the tissues.
Hay fever affects 15% of Australians or 3.1 million people and for most of spring, sufferers are reduced to carrying around antihistamine medication they can take when allergies strike. And if you’re lucky enough not to be a sufferer of hay fever, you better believe it – they strike.
What many people don’t know however is that even if medication may only be the only way to temporarily silence the allergies, there are things you can do to make the allergies less intense, sometimes even unnoticeable.
01. Eat Up
A survey from the charity Allergy UK found that people with hay fever who eat a healthy, varied diet were less likely to suffer severe symptoms.
It’s recommended you eat a balanced diet consisting of lots of fruits and vegetables, but also be wary of foods which can actually make hay fever worse. For some people, these includes apples, tomatoes, bananas, melons and celery.
Foods rich in omega 3 and 6 essential fats – which can be found in fish, nuts, seeds and oils – contain anti-inflammatory properties which will also reduce symptoms.
02. Attack From The Inside
A common misconception about hay fever is that it only hits you when you’re outside. The truth is pollution can be five times worse inside your home, but you just can’t see it.
Your move? You can either spend hours running around disinfecting every room, or you can buy an air purifier. We recommend the Dyson purifier range to safeguard your sinuses as it automatically captures 99.95% of fine particles such as allergens and pollutants.
While you might think the air inside your house is clean, it can contain bacteria and mould, industrial and auto emissions, odours and domestic fumes and pet dander. All of these, along with the largely increased pollen count, is enough to drive your allergies insane.
03. Drink Less, Sleep More
Alcohol is particularly bad when it comes to hay fever as it often worsens the condition. Beer, wine and certain spirits contain high levels of histamine, the exact chemical which sets off your allergies in the first place.
As well as making the symptoms worse, the alcohol will also dehydrate you which makes your symptoms seem worse.
Avoiding late nights can also help as the Allergy UK survey found that only 1/8 people experienced severe symptoms when they slept 8 hours a night, compared with 1/5 people who had five hours or less sleep per night.