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Hay Fever

Hayfever, also known as allergic rhinitis, is an allergic reaction to small particles in the air known as pollen.

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Available Treatments

Nasobec aqueous 50mcg nasal spray 200 doses

Nasobec Aqueous Nasal Spray

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  • Prevents symptoms from developing
  • Reduces intranasal inflammation
  • Easy to administer nasal spray
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Beconase aqueous 50mcg nasal spray 200 doses

Beconase Aqueous Nasal Spray

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  • Relieves hayfever symptoms
  • Lasts all day
  • Eligible for discreet next-day delivery
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Neoclarityn 5mg desloratadine 30 film-coated tablets for hayfever and allergies

Neoclarityn

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  • Blocks histamines
  • Non-drowsy medicine
  • Reduces itchiness
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Cetirizine 10mg 30 film-coated tablets for hayfever

Cetirizine

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  • Reduces hayfever symptoms
  • Taken once daily
  • Non-sedating antihistamine
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Desloratadine 5mg 30 film-coated tablets

Desloratadine

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  • Can be used with nasal sprays and eye drops
  • Provides all-day relief
  • Taken once daily
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Dymista azelastine and fluticasone nasal spray suspension

Dymista Nasal Spray

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  • Prevents hay fever symptoms
  • Easy to take nasal spray
  • Prevents nasal inflammation
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Rhinolast azelastine 22ml nasal spray for hayfever and allergic rhinitis

Rhinolast

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  • Effective antihistamine
  • Works within 15 minutes
  • Easy to use spray
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Telfast 120mg fexofenadine 30 film-coated tablets for hayfever

Telfast (fexofenadine)

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  • Non-drowsy antihistamine
  • Effective at preventing symptoms
  • Works within an hour
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Zirtek allergy one-a-day cetirizine 30 tablets for hayfever and allergies

Zirtek

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  • Relieves symptoms
  • Non-drowsy
  • Available from a UK registered pharmacy
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Benadryl Allergy one-a-day 10mg cetirizine 14 tablets

Benadryl Allergy

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  • Relieves hayfever symptoms
  • Easy to take
  • Available from a UK based pharmacy
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Piriteze allergy cetirizine 12 tablets

Piriteze Allergy Tablets

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  • Fast-acting antihistamine
  • Effective against hay fever
  • Taken once a day
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Piriton allergy tablets chlorphenamine maleate

Piriton Allergy Tablets

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  • Branded product
  • Simple to take
  • Relieves allergy symptoms
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Fexofenadine 120mg 30 hayfever and allergy tablets

Fexofenadine

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  • Relief for 24hrs
  • Prevents symptoms
  • Dispatched from a UK based pharmacy
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What is hayfever?

Hayfever is an allergic response to pollen in the air. A person is more likely to be afflicted with the condition between spring and autumn as this is when the pollen count is at its highest.

Pollen are particles which, when released by plants during the warmer months, become airborne. When someone susceptible to hayfever breathes in these particles, their immune system retaliates as if the harmless pollen were an infection.

Cells release chemicals called histamines, in an attempt to rid the body of the invasion. These chemicals can cause the nasal passages to become inflamed and make it difficult to breathe.

There are two main treatments for hayfever:

  • Antihistamines
  • Corticosteroids (steroids)

Antihistamines work by preventing the cells from producing histamines, hence the name.

Corticosteroids, on the other hand, work in a slightly different way. Rather than stopping the production of the chemical which causes the inflammation, they prevent the inflammatory response from occurring.

The NHS reports that corticosteroids are a more effective treatment for hayfever than antihistamine tablets.

Despite what the name might suggest, hayfever is not necessarily caused by hay and a fever is unlikely to be a symptom.


What are the symptoms of hayfever?

Symptoms of hayfever include:

  • A runny nose
  • Blocked nose
  • Coughing
  • Decrease in sense of smell
  • Earache
  • Headache
  • Itchy throat, mouth, nose and ears
  • Itchy, red or watery eyes
  • Nasal congestion
  • Pain around the temples and forehead
  • Sneezing
  • Tiredness

While the symptoms of hayfever are similar to those attributed of the common cold, they often last for weeks or months, reoccurring upon further exposure to pollen.


How can hayfever be prevented?

There are many ways hayfever can be prevented or managed, but these are not always possible.

A common recommendation is to rub Vaseline under your nose or around your nostrils to trap pollen.

Limiting your time outside and keeping windows and doors shut while the pollen count is high is an often affective strategy, but not always possible.

If you suffer from hayfever and need to venture outside, check the pollen count, which is often delivered as part of the weather forecast, and take appropriate steps to minimise your exposure to pollen.

You can try wearing wraparound sunglasses to prevent pollen getting into your eyes or a hat to prevent pollen getting into your hair and falling down your face.

Showering before bed can wash out the pollen which may have accumulated in your hair.


What treatments are available for hayfever?

There are a number of treatments available for hayfever. Many of which are available from your local pharmacy. If your symptoms do not improve after using these treatments, or you notice your symptoms have worsened, speak to your GP.

Decongestant sprays and eye drops can treat the symptoms of hayfever. These treatments are available from your local pharmacy and provide short term relief for those with minor to moderate hay fever symptoms.

Antihistamine tablets are often effective at preventing the release of chemicals which cause the inflammatory response in your nose. While they can provide longer lasting relief from the symptoms, they can cause drowsiness which can render you unable to drive or operate machinery as part of your work. Speak to your pharmacist about non-drowsy antihistamine tablets if this is a concern to you.

Corticosteroids, often in the form of a nasal spray, can be prescribed for those whose hayfever symptoms are severe or don't respond to other treatments. When taken regularly, corticosteroids can provide the long-lasting prevention of hay fever symptoms, similarly to antihistamines, but unlike antihistamines, which begin working within an hour to two, corticosteroids need to be taken regularly for a few days before they become effective.


Table of contents

What is hayfever?

What are the symptoms of hayfever?

How can hayfever be prevented?

What treatments are available for hayfever?

Additional resources

5 tips to beat hayfever

How long does hayfever last?

What's the difference between hayfever and a cold