The complaints and symptoms of hay fever

The complaints and symptoms of hay fever

Hay fever, also called allergic rhinitis, is an allergic reaction to pollen or pollen from flowering plants, grasses, trees and weeds. It is accompanied by symptoms ranging from mild to severe. Some complaints you hear often, others occur sporadically. We go through the 5 most common complaints with you and offer solutions. Also, always consult with your doctor for proper diagnosis and treatment options.

Common symptoms of hay fever

The symptoms of hay fever are often caused by pollen entering through your nose, eyes or mouth. As a result, the symptoms often occur in these areas. The symptoms of hay fever are often recognizable to sufferers. You can think of complaints such as:

  • Itching in your nose
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Sneezing and irritation in your nose
  • Itchy, watery eyes
  • A dry throat
  • A tickling cough
  • A feverish feeling
  • Fatigue or difficulty concentrating
  • Chest tightness and a wheeze when breathing
  • Nasal complaints such as colds and snottiness

Specific nasal complaints are the best known and most common complaints associated with hay fever. You have a cold and snotty or your nose is constantly blocked. A runny nose, an itchy nose or frequent sneezing are also common. And in addition, we know about postnasal drip: A condition where mucus drips from the nose and throat backwards. This can lead to coughing, sore throat and an uncomfortable feeling in the throat.

Itchy and watery eyes

We inhale the allergens responsible for hay fever, such as grass pollen or tree pollen. Thus, these come into contact with the mucous membrane of our eyes. The immune system of people who are sensitive to these allergens reacts to these invaders. It does this by releasing histamine. This histamine is supposed to protect you from foreign invaders, such as the allergens in pollen. But histamine is a chemical that also causes inflammation. It causes blood vessels in the eyes to dilate and mucous membranes to swell.

This dilation of blood vessels and swelling of mucous membranes causes itching and irritation in the eyes or causes burning and watery eyes.

Shortness of breath/shortness of breath

In hay fever, the immune system produces antibodies. These antibodies react to the allergens in pollen and stimulate the release of, what we described earlier, histamine and other chemicals in the body. This leads to inflammation of the nose, throat, eyes and airways. It brings with it symptoms such as a stuffy nose and sneezing, as well as a feeling of tightness in the chest and shortness of breath.

Dry mouth

Histamine. The word has been dropped a few times now. The chemical also reduces the production of saliva, making your mouth feel dry. Dry mouth can also be caused precisely by the use of certain medications, such as antihistamines often taken to relieve hay fever symptoms. For example, cetirizine.

Fatigue symptoms

Fatigue in hay fever can result from several factors. The inflammatory response that occurs in the body may lead to feelings of fatigue and lethargy. The constant release of histamine to counteract the pollen costs your body energy.

In addition, the symptoms of hay fever itself, such as a stuffy nose, itchy eyes and poor sleep due to difficulty breathing, can also contribute to fatigue. Sleeping poorly at night because of hay fever symptoms can lead to daytime sleepiness and fatigue.

Taking antihistamine tablets can also stimulate fatigue and sleepiness. The so-called sedative effect.

General remedies for hay fever

Regardless of what complaint you are currently dealing with, there are a few simple solutions that will prevent you from coming into contact with pollen that you can always apply.

The most well-known solution for any hay fever complaint is to avoid exposure to pollen as much as possible. No pollen, no symptoms. So try to stay indoors whenever possible and especially when pollen concentrations are high. In doing so, keep windows and doors closed. It may take some discipline from you to keep everything closed and go out the door less often.
Air cleaners with a HEPA filter help remove pollen and other allergens from the air. This improves indoor air quality and reduces symptoms.

Specific remedies for hay fever

Remedies for itchy and watery eyes

  • Wear sunglasses outdoors. The pollen is then less likely to come into contact with your eyes.
  • Wash your hands and face to avoid rubbing pollen in your eyes
  • Use eye drops for temporary relief of itching and irritation
  • Or consider medication such as antihistamine tablets. Do consult a pharmacist first.

Remedies for nasal complaints

At ENT store, we offer Sanispira anti-allergy nasal filter. A filter that traps allergens and dust in the nose so you don't inhale them. With a Sanispira filter in the nose, the nasal mucosa is protected from grass and tree pollen, as well as dust mites and animal dander (e.g., from cats, dogs and horses). The result is less allergy.

A hay fever nasal ointment protects your nasal mucosa from pollen. For this, use RhinoBlock. By applying RhinoBlock nasal ointment to your nose, you place a protective layer over the nasal mucosa. This protective layer prevents allergens from settling there en masse. As a result, typical cold symptoms caused by allergy decrease.

When nasal symptoms have already set in, the Nasofree Nasal Shower is a fine way to flush out "mucus, snot, crusts, dust" or allergens from your nose. It is excellent solution for cold symptoms. It brings relief from a stuffy nose by cleansing your nose and nasal sinuses. You can breathe more freely again. You use the nasal douche in combination with rinsing salts, never with water alone because that irritates the nasal mucosa.

Antihistamines have an inhibiting effect on histamine. And corticosteroid nasal sprays inhibit certain stimuli that cause allergic reactions of the nasal mucosa. Immunotherapy is recommended in some patients.

There are also nasal sprays that reduce the swelling of the nasal mucosa and provide temporary relief from nasal congestion. For that, check out Capsinol hay fever nasal spray on ENT shop.


Remedies for stuffiness and shortness of breath

Shortness of breath and shortness of breath are annoying symptoms of hay fever. The following remedies can help relieve it:

  • Medications such as antihistamines offer a possible solution for respiratory problems.
  • Nasal sprays containing corticosteroids can be used to reduce inflammation in the nose.
  • If hay fever causes severe breathing problems, allergy immunotherapy may be considered. This is a treatment in which you are gradually given larger and larger amounts of the allergen, gradually reducing the immune system's response.

If these symptoms are extreme, contact a doctor.

Remedies for dry mouth

To reduce the symptoms of dry mouth, try the following:

  • Use a humidifier: At ENT shop, we have the Olly humidifier for this purpose. This puts an end to dry air in a room. As a result, symptoms such as fatigue, headaches and irritated airways decrease. 
  • Other ways to reduce dry mouth is to ensure adequate hydration. Drink plenty of water. Or chew sugar-free gum: It helps stimulate saliva production and relieve dry mouth.
  • Stop using mouthwashes with alcohol: Because alcohol further dries out your mouth.
  • There are saliva substitutes available at pharmacies that can help with dry mouth. Consult a pharmacist for advice on which option is best for you.

If symptoms persist or are extreme, consult a doctor. He or she can assess your symptoms and possibly recommend other treatment options to relieve your hay fever symptoms and associated dry mouth.

Remedies for fatigue and lethargy

Fatigue can be a consequence of the intense cold symptoms you experience with hay fever. For example, because you sleep poorly during the night. Therefore, to experience relief from cold symptoms, we recommend the Nasofree Nasal Shower with saline solution.

As a remedy for nasal complaints, we describe RhinoBlock. It protects your nasal mucosa from pollen. If this reduces the severe cold symptoms, it should also reduce the symptoms of fatigue caused by lack of sleep, for example.

Antihistamine tablets can lead to fatigue. A solution to this may be to take them in the evening before going to bed.


Less common complaints in hay fever.

You may recognize yourself less in the above common complaints. But the list of complaints is long. Especially if you suffer from extreme hay fever symptoms. Other somewhat less common complaints include:

  • Coughing: caused by postnasal drip or irritation
  • Dizziness: due to sinus congestion and inflammation
  • Headache: this is usually caused by sinus congestion and the pressure created in the nose and sinuses
  • Fever: or rather a febrile feeling
  • Sore throat: ranging from itching, pain, dryness and irritation

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