There are many natural treatments that may help alleviate the symptoms of hayfever. Please read on to find out more about which remedies may suit you.
What is Hayfever?
Otherwise known as allergic rhinitis or pollinosis, hayfever is an allergic reaction triggered by allergens such as dust, pollen, mites, grasses, moulds, animal fur/hair and/or air pollution. The condition tends to occur seasonally with outdoor allergens and at any time to those found indoors.
Hayfever occurs when allergens become trapped in the fine hairs and mucous membranes of the nasal passages, mouth, throat and lungs. The immune system reacts by stimulating the release of the antibody Immunoglobin E (IgE), which is designed to fight and eliminate the allergens. Histamine is then released from the IgE to flush the allergens out of the airways, which produces a list of symptoms described below.
Symptoms of Hayfever
Common symptoms of hayfever include:
- Sore throat
- Itching of nose, mouth, eyes, throat, ear and skin
- Impaired smell
- Red and watery eyes
- Stuffy and runny nos
- Sleeping problems.
Natural Ways to Relieve Hayfever
1. Balanced Diet
Eating a clean and balanced diet, rich in good quality protein, fruits and vegetables, may reduce hayfever symptoms in strengthening the immune system. Drink filtered water only, and avoid foods such as flour, dairy products, salt, sugar, alcohol and anything else highly processed.
Other foods that may benefit hayfever include:
2. Vitamin supplements
Specific supplements that may reduce hayfever symptoms include:
- Vitamin C
- A good quality multi-vitamin
- Magnesium Pantothenate
- Quercetin with Bromelain
- Omega 3 fatty acids
Acupuncture has been demonstrated by science to effectively relieve symptoms of hayfever. It does so by correcting and balancing energy flow through the use of needles on the skin, specifically on facial points. This helps to stimulate the immune system, clear congestion, any associated pain and reduce inflammation.
4. Aromatherapy & Essential Oils
The therapeutic aromas of essential oils may relieve hayfever attacks. They are best heated in an oil burner, inhaled on a hanky or over a steaming bucket of hot water. Popular essential oils for hayfever include:
- Tee Tree oil
- Roman chamomile
Several herbs may be used to alleviate the sneezing, coughing, itching and congestion symptoms associated with hayfever. They mainly work by strengthening and supporting the allergen-fighting immune system.
Some of these herbs include:
- Stinging Nettle
- Luffa complex
- Perilla frutescens
6. Indian Head massage
Used for thousands of years by the Ayurvedic tradition, Indian head massage may assist in clearing hayfever-associated congestion, headache and sinus pain.
- Stay indoors if the news reports a high pollen count.
- Avoid the outdoors when possible during spring, on windy days or immediately after thunderstorms.
- Replace your lawn with paved or bricked areas.
- Using your finger line the inside of your nose with petroleum jelly (eg: Vaseline) to inhibit pollen from touching the lining of your nasal passages.
- Wash your eyes out with cold water as often as possible to flush out any pollen