What you can do to prepare yourself for hay fever season

If you suffer from seasonal hay fever, you know how irritating the symptoms can be each Spring. Here are 10 top tips that will help you and your family make it through this hay fever season with your sanity intact.

1. Monitor the Pollen Forecast.

Did you know that there are sites available that will monitor the pollen levels in your area? They will display warnings ranging from low to moderate and very high. So if your hay fever acts on when the count is high, you can try and minimise your exposure by staying indoors. If you find yourself having trouble with your hay fever and you’re not sure what is triggering it, it is a good idea to schedule an appointment with your doctor. He or she can help you pinpoint what is triggering your symptoms.

2. Install a Dehumidifier.

A dehumidifier may help battle mould that tends to collect in basements and damp areas of houses. Mould is often a common trigger for hay fever symptoms. You should clean it once a week and air out damp clothing and shoes before you store them. This can decrease the level of mould spores in your home.

3. Shower After You Come in From Outside.

Once you go outdoors, the pollen in the air will stick to your skin and your clothing. If you shower and change clothes, the majority of the pollen will be gone, and it won’t be able to irritate your symptoms.

4. Avoid Other Irritants Like Smoke.

Don’t forget if you’re around smoke, it can cause your hay fever symptoms to flare up. Other things like insect spray, paint, and some household chemicals can cause this as well – a great excuse to get someone else to do the housework if you can!

5. Prepare Your Nose.

Allergens breathed through the nose often trigger hay fever symptoms so cleansing your nose with a preservative-free saline to wash irritants away makes sense e.g. Flo Baby and Kids Saline, Flo Saline Plus or Flo Sinus Care. If your symptoms are more severe or you don’t know what triggers your allergies, you should always talk to your doctor or pharmacist.

6. Try to Allergy Proof Your Home.

If pollen is your hay fever trigger and it’s a high pollen day, keep your windows closed and try to avoid opening and closing your front door. Remove throw rugs and additional throw pillows, so there are fewer areas for pollen spores to attach to.

7. Reduce Pet Dander.

If you have pets in your home, you may be reacting to their dander. You can minimise the amount of pet dander in your home with daily vacuuming. Also, try to keep your pet to areas with hard floors. It is a good idea to keep them off the furniture or at least vacuum soft furnishings where they sit.

8. Check Your Car’s Air Conditioner.

Using the air conditioner in your vehicle is another way to avoid pollen and hay fever triggers. However, your car’s air conditioner could be exposing you to hay fever triggers. You should run your car’s air conditioner for ten minutes or so with the windows cracked open and point the vents away from your face. This should be enough time to rid the system of any stray spores.

9. Ask for Help With Outdoor Chores or Wear a Mask.

If you know outdoor activities like gardening, mowing your lawn, and pruning trees or shrubs cause your symptoms to worsen, ask for help. You can hire services to do this for you as well. If this doesn’t sound appealing,
wear a light mask when you’re working in your yard. Your doctor or pharmacist can also assist with some effective treatments so you can complete outdoor activities with your hay fever.

10. Avoid Peak Allergy Exposure Times.

There are a few times throughout the day you should avoid going out if you can. Pollen counts are usually lower in the early morning and mid evenings. They start to climb around mid-morning, and they typically reach a peak in the early afternoon. It varies depending on the weather. If there is a high pollen count advisory, the time of day probably won’t make that big of a difference and there will still be a high pollen count in the air.

NOTE: If your hay fever tends to be persistent and occurs all year round, or it affects your day-to-day life, always get advice from your healthcare professional.