by Lisa Bullen

For those who have never suffered the miseries of hay fever,it is easy to think it’s “just” about a snuffly nose and runny or itchy eyes, but it can be a real source of misery for around 20% of the population who have cause to dread the summer months.

Allergic rhinitis (or hay fever) symptoms make an appearance when an allergen such as pollen triggers a hypersensitive reaction in the eyes, nose, throat and /or chest. Contact with the allergen sets off the release of histamine that causes the characteristic inflammation, streaming and congestion that characterises a severe hay fever reaction. The potential range of symptoms can vary hugely from a mild sensation of irritation to great distress and discomfort. Any of the following can occur

  • red bloodshot eyes that water or feel gritty
  • intense itching of the eyes and eyelids
  • puffiness and swelling of the eyelids, dry itchy sensation in the nose, palate and /or ears
  • variable mucus discharges from the nose that may be watery or thick or the nose may feel congested and blocked
  • wheezing or coughing
  • itchy and sensitive skin

There may also be other allergic conditions in the same person such as eczema and asthma, or known food intolerance’s or allergies. These can point to “atopy” which is another way of saying that someone has a family tendency to be sensitive to allergens. There are a number of approaches that can be utilised to help including Acupuncture, Nutritional advice and Homeopathy.

Homeopathy is a system of medicine which is based on treating the individual with highly diluted substances given in mainly tablet form, which triggers the body’s natural system of healing. Based on their analysis of the symptoms, a homeopath will match the most appropriate medicine to the patient. When consulting with a Homeopath you may find that you are being prescribed homeopathic medicines in 2 different ways.

Firstly with the aim of addressing the Acute hay fever symptoms when they occur  There are a number of really helpful homeopathic remedies that may be prescribed to take on an acute basis, including Sabadilla, useful when there is a lot of sneezing, Euphrasia when the eye symptoms are worse than the nasal ones, and Natrum Mur when there’s a loss of smell, taste and the nose just streams.Secondly the long term aim will be to reduce your frequency of your hay fever attacks in the first place.This will use individual homeopathic constitutional remedies which are geared towards boosting your own level of health and wellbeing .