Hay Fever: Symptoms and Causes

Hay Fever - The Giving Nature

What is Hay Fever?

Hay fever refers to a medical condition brought about by an allergic reaction that an individual has on the pollen that comes from plants. The condition is also called allergic rhinitis or seasonal allergy and occurs as nose inflammation that leads to the nasal passages irritating and swelling. Hay fever can affect both children and adults and is mostly associated with the early periods of the summer and spring seasons.

How is Hay Fever Caused?

Like other known allergies, hay fever also occurs when the human body created allergic antibodies to react against certain elements like pollen and dust that causes instability in the body. These elements are known as allergens.

Hay fever is mostly caused by an allergen that is found in grass pollen. This condition is active mainly between May and July. However, between February and June, the common allergen is found in trees while between June and September the allergen is found in weed pollen. These pollens are the primary causes of hay fever. However, some known medical conditions can also increase the risk of one contracting hay fever. Some of these conditions include stress, asthma, pregnancy, illness or trauma, nasal polyps, a deviated septum, or even being allergic to some foods.

What are the Symptoms of Hay Fever?

The symptoms are tailored at wearing your body down and slowing your productivity. The symptoms to rhinitis can vary from season to season. However, no matter the season, these symptoms will have an impact on your day-to-day life. Rhinitis symptoms of mold and pollen allergies have been growing at an unexplainable rate for the past 30 years.

Most of the symptoms which are associated with hay fever are similar to the symptoms of a sinus infection or a common cold. However, the sinus infection and the common cold are known to go as quick as they emerged than that of seasonal allergy (hay fever). The Hay fever symptoms continue to show so long as the pollen is still dominant. Nonetheless, when the pollen has become dormant, the symptoms lessen and begin to go.

An individual who has contracted seasonal allergy in one season will exhibit the same symptoms on the next season he or she contracts the allergy. Symptoms of seasonal allergy normally manifest in the eyes, lungs, and nose. If the individual contracted hay fever from food allergies, he or she might exhibit the symptoms on the mouth and inside the stomach. Normally, food allergies lead to the individual getting skin rashes.

The common signs of Hay fever seasonal allergy include:

  • Congestion in the nasal passages
  • A period of post-nasal drip characterized by a runny nose with excess production of mucus and sneezing.
  • Eyes that are both itchy and watery
  • A scratchy throat
  • Low blood pressure
  • A feeling of exasperation and tickling in the ears
  • A decrease in the concentration and focus
  • A decrease in decision-making
  • Asthma
  • Hives
  • Frequent exhaustion
  • Development of sleep disorders and insomnia
  • Development of frequent mood swings
  • Irritability
  • Eczema
  • Infections in the middle ear

One can limit the chances of experiencing these symptoms if he or she spends less time outdoors. However, this is not a viable solution because nobody wants to spend their fall and summer periods stuck indoors. Therefore, it is recommended that the person who is at risk of getting seasonal allergy avoids contact with the allergen, which causes hay fever. This is because allergies cannot be prevented. However, allergic reactions can. This might be a proper Hay fever treatment for people with other allergies except those with seasonal allergies because the pollen is tiny and cannot be avoided. They are transmitted through the air and quickly get in contact with people.

As such, people with seasonal allergies have to adopt a treatment system which focuses on them changing their lifestyle, diet, and other treatments.

Effects of Hay Fever

Allergic reactions vary depending on a person. Due to allergic rhinitis, the person may be affected in one way or another in his daily life. For instance, one may;

  • Be fatigued
  • Sinusitis and middle ear infection which might affect your daily activities
  • Irritations like in nose, itchy skin, mouth and throat
  • Sleep disorder
  • Delayed leaning
  • Limited activities
  • Problem with remembering things
  • Missed days for going to school and work
  • Worsening asthma
  • Headaches
  • Earache

Hay Fever Diagnosis

Persistent allergic reactions should not be taken lightly or ignored. One should seek assistance from an allergist who is a specialist in dealing with allergies. As one seeks assistance from an allergist, an allergy test is not necessary during hay fever diagnosis. One is recommended to see a doctor only if he is no responding to an over the counter medication.

You are advised to see your doctor if you notice the symptoms below:

  • Your symptoms seem to be worse
  • Is asthmatic
  • Has a perennial type of hay fever
  • You are not reacting to over the counter medication
  • Your symptoms last for more than a week

Curing the Symptoms of Hay Fever

You will be wondering how to cure Hay fever? Like many allergies, the symptoms of seasonal allergy can be reduced or cured by taking some prescribed medicinal drugs such as decongestants, corticosteroids, and antihistamines. A selection of other OTC drugs can also help in reducing these symptoms. However, medicinal drugs can have some unwanted side effects on the individual. Therefore, individuals who have pharmaceutical allergies cannot take these drugs because of the negative reaction they will have afterward.

As such, these individuals have to stay away from certain foodstuffs and food preservatives, which are known to increase the symptoms of hay fever. Caffeine, alcohol, peanuts, chocolate, dairy products, sugar, citrus, and wheat are examples of foodstuffs which have been proven to increase or worsen the symptoms of hay fever. The common preservatives include sodium sulfite, potassium bisulfite, sodium bisulfite, and artificial sweeteners. Individuals who have seasonal allergies are recommended to stay away from these foodstuffs and food preservatives to lessen the symptoms of hay fever.

It is also recommended that processed foods such as shrimp, bottled citrus juice, and dried fruits be avoided. It is also important to avoid foods which trigger excess production of mucus. In a nutshell, people with seasonal allergy are recommended to avoid foods which can result in hay fever rash on your body.

Which foods should a person with seasonal allergy go for?

There are many foods out there which can help a person with a seasonal allergy to curb the huger. Local raw honey, Probiotic-rich foods, organic apple cider vinegar and fresh organic vegetables are some of the rich foods which can be taken instead. Although the list seems a little overwhelming, it still has some foods that have a great taste that will still help in strengthening the immune system and at the same time, relieve you from the symptoms.

Local honey is considered to be the most efficient food of controlling seasonal allergies as well as the other known allergies. This is mainly because raw honey is collected purely from the hive and therefore, contains the same allergens that cause the allergies. In this case, the honey contains the local pollens that cause hay fever. Good quality honey can reduce nasal congestion, watery eyes, and other hay fever symptoms.

Consuming raw organic dairy products is also a great way of combating excessive mucus production. This is because the process of pasteurization helps in the destruction of excess enzymes in the body.

Foods that are rich in probiotics are good for strengthening your immune system. They are also good at improving digestion and increasing energy levels. A good selection of probiotic-rich foods that you should add to your shopping list include:

  • Yogurt
  • raw cheese
  • kimchi or sauerkraut
  • kefir
  • natto, and
  • kombucha

Pineapples have the bromelain enzyme. This enzyme has higher levels of vital nutrients and vitamins B and C. this can help you to reduce your reaction to hay fever. You are recommended to eat the fresh and ripe pineapples that still have the highest concentration of all the essential nutrients that you need when the allergy season comes. 

Cedar vinegar that is present in apples is an important element of boosting your immune system. The vinegar assists your body to break the mucus in the nasal passage and also support the lymphatic drainage of your body. For even a better relief, it is recommended that you mix a tablespoon of apple cedar vinegar with a tablespoon of freshly squeezed lemon juice and a half-tablespoon of raw honey and drink the solution three times in a day.

You should select vegetables that have the highest nutrient concentration to consume during and allergy season. These vegetables can be selected by looking at their colors. Normally, dark green, yellow, or orange vegetables have the highest concentration of nutrients. These vegetables are good for fighting seasonal allergies.

When you have a desire to consume meat but you are limited to consuming canned meat due to your allergies, you can go for freshly caught fish, especially salmon, free-range poultry, and organic grass-fed beef. Don’t go for artificially fed poultry or animals they may contain unwanted chemicals that may, in turn, trigger your allergies. Freshly caught fish is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins, healthy protein, and a selection of essential minerals. You should start using these feeds so that you become used to them.

As said earlier, include ginger, garlic, and onions in your diets. Ginger is a good spice that helps your body to break down the toxins in your system and at the same time, enable warmth of the body and internal organs.

Prevention: Adopting a healthy lifestyle

Apart from adopting a healthy eating schedule during the allergy season, you are also recommended to adopt a new lifestyle change when the allergy season comes.

Apart from adopting a healthy eating schedule during the allergy season, you are also recommended to adopt a new lifestyle change when the allergy season comes.

  1. You should stay hydrated by drinking at least eight glasses of fresh water daily. Hydration is important in making it easier for you to expel any mucus that has accumulated in the nasal passage.
  2. It is recommended that you limit outdoor exposure on windy and dusty days. In case you need to go out on these days, consider wearing a mask or any protective gear.
  3. When preparing for bed, you are recommended to take a shower before you go to sleep. This is important so that the dust and pollen that may be left on your body gets washed off as they may worsen your symptoms of such allergy.
  4. Your clothes and beddings should be kept clean at all times. Observe this to reduce the chances of exposure to allergens.
  5. Furry pets like dogs and cats should be wiped down when they come from outdoors. Wipe them using a moist washcloth to prevent the chances of bringing pollen inside the house.
  6. Use hard surface flooring instead of a fury carpet. Fury carpets keep dust that becomes difficult to remove by a vacuum. To fix this, you are recommended to replace the carpet with one that is easy to clean.
  7. Close your doors and windows, especially on days which have high pollen count.

Conclusion

Seasonal allergies have been in the increase during the past 30 years. Allergies form part of the chronic diseases forming America’s fifth chronic disease that affects people from all age groups. Prescribed and OTC medications are only applied to help in relieving the symptoms of hay fever. Therefore, natural remedies are the best option of combating the condition. You cannot get rid of an allergy. However, you can get rid of the reactions that are associated with the allergy. The treatment process requires you to have patience and adopt a combination of techniques to manage the symptoms. A good way is starting by changing your fridge down and getting rid of the foods that trigger allergic reactions. In their place, you should add supplements and foods rich in nutrients. Once you keep up to this routine, you will have a proper way of managing the symptoms when the allergy season comes.

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