Hay Fever: Symptoms, Treatment and a Long-Term Cure?
‘Tis the season! No, we’re not talking about the upcoming festive season but about beloved allergic rhinitis also known as hay fever. However, just because it seems so common these days it doesn’t mean one shouldn’t take their symptoms seriously.
What is it, when and how some of us are suffering from it?
More often than not, when people mention hay fever they’re referring to seasonal allergies (outdoor grass, tree, and weed pollen allergies) Symptoms become more severe during the peak season (from early spring till autumn) and include runny nose, itchy, watery eyes, sneezing, itchy nose or throat and nasal congestion.(Zyrtec.com.au 2016)
So if you’ve caught yourself experiencing any of the symptoms above you’re probably a part of 21% of the Australian population suffering from hay fever. (NPS MedicineWise 2019)
How can we help relieve these symptoms?
For mild hay fever, an antihistamine may be the only medicine you’ll need.
Some of the most common over-the-counter medications are:
- Antihistamine tablets
- Nasal sprays
- Eye drops
(NPS MedicineWise 2019)
However, those do not prove effective in every case. Some may consider the use of steroids being one of the most powerful anti-inflammatory medications available. Those are most beneficial when the body’s immune system gets out of control in response to the allergy and affects one’s everyday life. (Netdoctor 2019)
For those with severe symptoms looking for more of a long-term solution allergen-specific immunotherapy might be the answer. During this treatment, patients are ‘vaccinated’ against their own allergies. Which in turn forces the immune system to become ‘less sensitive’ to the substances that trigger the allergy. (ASCIA 2019)
RealCare Health Clinic advice?
Don’t just accept your symptoms. Hay fever treatments work best when they are tailored to each individual. If you wish to discuss your best options, book an appointment with one of our GPs to make an informed decision.
ASCIA 2019, ‘Allergen Immunotherapy’, https://www.allergy.org.au/patients/allergy-treatment/immunotherapy
Netdoctor 2019, ‘The Pros and cons of the Hay fever Injection’. https://www.netdoctor.co.uk/healthy-living/a28199/kenalog-hay-fever-injection-private/
NPS MedicineWise 2019, ‘Managing Hay fever’, <https://www.nps.org.au/consumers/managing-hay-fever >
Zyrtec.com.au 2016, ‘What causes hay fever?’, <https://www.zyrtec.com.au/hayfever/hayfever-causes >