Many New Zealanders celebrate the first of September as marking the end of a cold, wet and dark winter. You certainly see an increase in the hay fever type of illnesses with the allergens that float around as you get to the warmer months. For hundreds of thousands of people however, spring brings with it pollen and the misery of hay fever.
Allergies are the most common chronic health condition affecting New Zealanders. At least 1 in 5 is affected, and this is likely to rise. Allergies are caused by the immune system overreacting to something that is otherwise harmless to most people.
Allergic rhinitis – commonly known as hay fever – is the most common symptom of allergies. It causes a recurrent runny, stuffy or itchy nose, and frequent sneezing. It can also affect eyes, sinuses, throat and ears.
Fortunately there are many products available to treat and prevent allergy symptoms:
- Nasal sprays like Azep and Dymista.
- Antihistamine tablets like Levrix and Lora-Tabs.
- Eye drops.
- Health supplements.
Ways to protect against allergic rhinitis:
- Keep your home and car windows closed on windy days during the pollen season (August to March).
- Avoid mowing lawns or walking in long grass. Wear close-fitting sunglasses.
- Reduce house dust mites by vacuuming often and shampooing the carpet regularly. Consider using dust-mite-proof covers for mattresses, duvets and pillows.
- Keep pets outdoors and regularly vacuum their hair or fur off the floor and furniture.
- Avoid dry dusting – instead use a damp cloth to wipe over surfaces.
- Hot-wash bed linen weekly, and air blankets in the sun for about 4 hours to kill dust mites.
Come in and see the team at Bargain Chemist, or shop online for convenience. We are always here for you with professional friendly advice.