Many of us rejoice when the clocks go forward, but for others it can mean the start of a miserable season of hayfever. The itchy eyes, the running nose, the feeling of being run down – this allergy really isn’t fun. There are some surprising ways that you can reduce your symptoms, however, and here are our top tips to help you with the hayfever season ahead.
Firstly, take a look at your exercise levels. Physical activity may be the last thing on your mind but it can make a real difference to your symptoms and you may find they become milder the more you exercise.
Next, take a look at your stress level, as this can aggravate your hayfever symptoms. Try to take time out to relax each day. This could take the form of a yoga class or reading a book, for example.
Thirdly, look at what you are eating and drinking. As the nights get lighter, it can be easy to fall into the habit of having ‘just another’ glass of wine accompanied by a packet of crisps, which can have an adverse effect on your symptoms. Eating a well-balanced, healthy diet is a better option, but you also need to watch out for certain foods. Apples, tomatoes, melons, bananas, celery and fruit with stones may worsen your symptoms, while oily fish, nuts and seeds can help.
Finally, make sure you are getting plenty of sleep. A study by Allergy UK found that 13 per cent of people who slept for more than seven hours a night said they had severe symptoms, compared with 21 per cent who slept for less than five hours. Make sure you give yourself time to prepare for sleep, perhaps by turning off the TV an hour before you plan to go to bed and having a glass of warm milk and a bath to help you unwind and get ready for restful slumber.