What is Hay Fever Allergy ?
Hay fever, also called allergic rhinitis, causes seasonal cold-like signs and symptoms, such as a runny nose, itchy eyes, congestion, sneezing and sinus pressure. But unlike a cold, hay fever isn’t caused by a virus. Hay fever is caused by our body’s allergic response to outdoor or indoor allergens, such as pollen, dust mites, or tiny flecks of skin and saliva shed by cats, dogs, and other animals with fur or feathers, called pet dander. Besides making you miserable, hay fever can affect your performance at work or school and generally interfere with your life.
But you don’t have to put up with annoying symptoms. You can learn to avoid triggers and find the right treatment. Symptoms of Hay Fever. Depending on an individual’s health conditions, Hay Fever signs and symptoms can include Runny nose, nasal congestion, watery, itchy, red eyes (allergic conjunctivitis), Sneezing, Cough, Itchy nose, the roof of mouth or throat Swollen, blue-coloured skin under the eyes (allergic shiners), Postnasal drip, and Fatigue.
Your Hay Fever signs and symptoms may start or worsen at a particular time of year. Triggers may include Tree pollen, which is common in early spring. Grass pollen, which is common in late spring and summer. Ragweed pollen, which is common in fall. Dust mites, cockroaches and dander from pets can be bothersome year-round (perennial).
Symptoms caused by dander might worsen in winter, when houses are closed up. Spores from indoor and outdoor fungi an molds are considered both seasonal and perennial. Seasonally Related Triggers. While the term seasonal allergies generally refers to grass, pollen and mold, there is a different group of triggers that are closely tied to particular Hey Fever seasons. Among them: Smoke (campfires in summer, fireplaces in winter).
Insect bites and stings (usually in spring and summer). Chlorine in indoor and outdoor swimming pools. Candy ingredients (Halloween, Christmas, Valentine’s Day, Easter). Pine trees and wreaths (Thanksgiving to Christmas).
Your Body Works in Over Drive
When you have Hay Fever, your immune system identifies most harmless airborne substances as harmful. Your immune system then produces antibodies to fight these harmless substances. The next time you come in contact with any of the substances, these antibodies signal your immune system to release chemicals such as histamine into your bloodstream, which cause a strong reaction that leads to the signs and symptoms of Hay Fever.
It’s not possible to completely avoid all allergens , but you can reduce your symptoms by limiting your exposure to them.
If you know what you’re allergic to, you can avoid what triggers it
Pollen or Mould Triggers.
Close all doors and windows during the pollen season. Don’t hang laundry outside — pollen can stick to sheets and towels. Use air conditioning in your house and car.
Use an allergy-grade filter in your home ventilation system and change it regularly. Avoid outdoor activity in the early morning, when pollen counts are highest. Stay indoors on dry, windy days. Use a dehumidifier to reduce indoor humidity. Use a high-efficiency particulate air filter in your bedroom and other rooms where you spend a lot of time.
Avoid mowing the lawn or raking leaves. Wear a dust mask when cleaning the house or gardening.
Dust Mite Triggers.
Use allergy-proof covers on all beddings, such as mattresses, box springs, and pillows. Wash sheets and blankets in water heated to at least 130 F, or 54 C.
Use a dehumidifier or air conditioner to reduce indoor humidity. Vacuum carpets weekly with a vacuum cleaner equipped with a small particle or HEPA filter. Spray insecticide designed to kill dust mites and approved for indoor use on carpets, furniture, and bedding. Consider removing carpeting, especially where you sleep, if you’re highly sensitive to dust mites.
Block all cracks and crevices where roaches can enter. Fix leaky faucets and pipes. Wash dishes and empty garbage daily. Sweep food crumbs from counters and floors. Store food, including pet food, in sealed containers and Consider professional pest extermination.
Pet Dander trigger
Keep pets outside of your home and Bathe dogs twice a week, if possible.
Vacuum the floor and Wipe flat surfaces more often and Keep pets out of your bedroom and off furniture.
Visit your nearest Pharmacy or Drug store to get some Over the Counter Treatments
Here are some Helpful Treatments
Antihistamines reduce sneezing, sniffling, and itching by lowering the amount of histamine in your body. Decongestants
shrink the blood vessels in the nasal passageways to relieve congestion and swelling.
Nasal spray decongestants relieve congestion and may clear clogged nasal passages faster than oral decongestants without some of the side effects.
Eye drops relieve itchy, watery eyes. Ketotifen (Zaditor) is available over the counter
Nasal irrigation use a combination of warm water, about a quarter-teaspoon of salt, and a quarter teaspoon of baking soda to clear out mucus and open sinus passages.
You can use a squeeze bottle or a neti pot, which looks like a small teapot. Use distilled, sterile, or previously boiled water to make up the solution.
Rinse the irrigation device after each use and leave it open to air dry.
Alternative Medicine. While there isn’t much evidence about how well alternative treatments work, a number of people try them for hay fever.
These include Herbal remedies and supplements. Extracts of the shrub butterbur may help prevent seasonal allergy symptoms. however be sure to use a product that’s labeled PA-free, which indicates that it’s had potentially toxic substances removed n
Spirulina and Tinospora cordifolia also may be effective.
Though their benefits are unclear, other herbal remedies for seasonal allergies include capsicum, honey, vitamin C and fish oil.
Acupuncture. Some people claim that acupuncture can help with seasonal allergy symptoms and found it as an effective alternative.
When to See a Doctor. There are different severity levels of Hey Fever. See your doctor if:
1– You can’t find relief from your hay fever symptoms.
2– Allergy medications don’t provide relief or cause annoying side effects.
3– You have another condition that can worsen hay fever symptoms, such as nasal polyps, asthma or frequent sinus infections.
Many people — especially children — get used to hay fever symptoms, so they might not seek treatment until the symptoms become severe. But getting the right medical treatment should offer quick relief.
Medical Diagnosis. Your doctor will perform a physical examination on you first, take a medical history, and possibly recommend one or both of the following tests: One. Skin prick test.
You’re watched for an allergic reaction after small amounts of material that can trigger allergies are pricked into the skin of your arm or upper back. If you’re allergic, you develop a raised bump or hive at the site of that allergen. Allergy specialists usually are best equipped to perform allergy skin tests.
Allergy blood test.
A blood sample is sent to a lab to measure your immune system’s response to a specific allergen. Also called the radio allergy sorbent test, called RAST, this test measures the amount of allergy-causing antibodies in your bloodstream, known as immunoglobulin E antibodies.
The Takeaway. The symptoms of seasonal allergies can be uncomfortable. If you suspect you have seasonal allergies and the symptoms are not severe, home remedies can be tried first to relief the symptoms.
If symptoms really affect your life, over the counter medicine, alternatives medicines are the next steps. Always talk with your doctor when more help is needed. They can help diagnose the cause of your symptoms and prescribe a treatment plan. They will likely encourage you to take steps to avoid your allergy triggers. They may also recommend an over the counter or prescription medicines.