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NHS Issues Hayfever Warning for North Yorkshire


8:00am 5th May 2014

Spring has officially sprung and whilst many people across the Vale of York are enjoying the brighter weather and longer days, experts have warned that the warmer weather has created 'perfect conditions' for a wave of dreaded hay fever.

This week is Allergy Awareness Week and the local NHS is taking the opportunity to promote well-being in hay fever sufferers by highlighting the symptoms of this common ailment and advising people where to get help.

Hay fever is an allergy to pollen that affects around 15 million people in the UK and its symptoms usually include frequent sneezing, a runny or blocked nose and itchy, red or watery eyes.

Lucy Botting, Chief Nurse at NHS Vale of York Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), said: “Although for many people the symptoms are mild, they can interfere with sleep and daily activities at work or school.

“We want to encourage people with hay fever not to suffer in silence. The warmer months can be a troublesome time for many sufferers but there are a number of treatments available to combat the symptoms of hay fever.

“For confidential, expert advice without having to wait for an appointment with your GP, visit your local pharmacy where you will be seen quickly and offered the best treatment option for you.”

Treatments for hay fever include tablets, inhalers, nasal sprays and eye drops which are all available from shops, supermarkets, pharmacies or your GP. Always read the patient information leaflet that comes with your medicine and if you have any questions, ask your pharmacist for advice.

There is also a number of really easy self-help tips that people with hay fever are encouraged to incorporate into their daily routine to minimalise many of the symptoms including keeping windows closed on days when the pollen count is high and taking regular showers.

Lucy Botting added: “People who suffer from asthma should be extra careful during this time of year and always speak to your GP if you feel your condition worsening. Your GP should be able to produce a plan for you so that you can control your symptoms by adjusting your asthma medication. If you are in any doubt, please call your doctor for advice."

Here are some tips on managing hay fever symptoms:

  • Keep doors and windows closed
  • Stay away from areas where there is more pollen such as grassy parks, especially in the early morning and again after around 4pm when the pollen count is highest
  • Wear wrap-around sunglasses to keep pollen out of your eyes
  • Take a shower and washing your hair after going outside
  • Try not to dry washing outside – pollen may get trapped in the fibres of clothes and bed linen
  • Put a pollen barrier cream or balm around the inside of your nostrils to reduce the amount of pollen that gets into your nose – petroleum jelly works for some people

For more information on all of your local healthcare services please visit: www.nhs.uk.


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