Stuck inside with hayfever

by bikeboy76   July 6, 2013  

Arrrg, I have been hit by a wall of mid summer pollen. The weather is glorious but my eyes are swollen, I am sneezing and my throat is raw like it is winter. I watched Film4's big artsy feature 'A Field in England' last night and hated it, boring and pretentious, this was probably because every time I blinked it felt like something was scratching my right eyeball. At least I don't have to venture out to work and the Tour, Wimbledon and Grand Prix are on. I hope the weather holds for a few evening bikes this week as I have important training to keep up with.
Even sunglasses don't keep the pollen out, so I can't ride and make it worse, face in a bowl of cold water time. Anyone else suffer this summer dilemma?

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Don't the pills have any effect? Have a little hayfever which I started in my late forties but it's not so bad. You could try something to block the nostrils, even some vaseline to trap the pollen.

posted by Alan Tullett [1434 posts]
6th July 2013 - 13:28

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Very treatable!

http://bestpractice.bmj.com/best-practice/monograph/232.html

http://learning.bmj.com/learning/module-intro/allergic-rhinitis--an-upda...

I'm lucky that my main symptoms are extranasal - unbearably itchy palate, streaming eyes etc - so any of the OTC antihistamines work for me. But there's good evidence for spraying steroids up your nose, too.

Just make sure your team doctor is on board, if you're at that level.

PJ McNally's picture

posted by PJ McNally [581 posts]
6th July 2013 - 14:13

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You need to pop along to the Dr and ask for a kenalog injection.

I have suffered with the worst hayfever my Dr had ever seen since the age of 3. Since then I have tried everything on the market, including salt therapy, tolerance therapy and Immunotherapy.

In the end, the only thing left was to give me the injection, because its a steroid you cannot get more than two a year, but I find one right at the start of the season works a treat and in vary rare high pollen times, I sometimes have to use eye drops at night. Like tonight, I'll most likely stick some in, because I've been out all day.

I would recommend trying Immunotherapy first though as that does work in most cases

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posted by Gkam84 [8700 posts]
6th July 2013 - 17:30

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Ice, suck on a block when the symptoms strike, it's helped 3 generations in our household! Also, I've heard a spoonful of local honey a day can help?

posted by Jaltham [67 posts]
6th July 2013 - 23:05

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Gkam, please don't send people asking for the last-resort treatments, when there are other safer, more effective things they could try first. Steroid injections and tolerance therapy are not the first things to try.

From those e-learning modules (which are paywalled, sadly, though anyone in the NHS can get institutional access):

"Subcutaneous immunotherapy is most commonly reserved for patients not responding to pharmacotherapy and environmental control measures, or for those either unwilling to take or unable to tolerate medications. Patients need to understand the principles and risks of immunotherapy prior to commencing treatment, since it requires a significant time commitment as well as potentially causing serious adverse reactions. Consequently, its use should be restricted to physicians well versed in the treatment of both allergic disease and anaphylaxis, which is a potential complication of therapy. While local reactions are common and rarely represent anything more than a nuisance, rare anaphylactic reactions may prove to be severe. Fatal reactions are estimated to occur at a rate of 1 in 2 to 2.5 million patients."

Basically, get along to your doctor! Don't trust your health to random people on online forums.

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posted by PJ McNally [581 posts]
7th July 2013 - 6:50

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The reason I mentioned immunotherapy or "desensitisation" as its also known, is because its the nearest thing to a cure. You go through your course of treatment, normally over a year or two and it is supposed to clear up all symptoms. You take a pill in conjunction with your regular hayfever treatments and it builds up your tolerance levels over time.

You may see it as a last resort, but many Dr's are recommending it as a first thing to try as the success rate is so high.

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posted by Gkam84 [8700 posts]
7th July 2013 - 10:23

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I was mainly having a moan. My eyes are now recovered enough to go out for a sunday morning spin, but expect to suffer afterwards. I use daily antihistamine pills for about two months each summer and generally they take the edge off any symptoms, expect for weekends like this where you just can't resist a rub.
PJ, true, going to the doctors asking for steroid injections does sound like a bit of an extreme measure. I love the idea that I might have a team doctor, you must be thinking of Raleigh/SirVelo.

Between the S and the LOW

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posted by bikeboy76 [1191 posts]
7th July 2013 - 11:02

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Do you start your antihistamines before the summer and before symptoms start? That's the best way to do it, getting them in your system a month or so before you even feel the effects of hayfever.

Do you have eye drops?

Gkam84's picture

posted by Gkam84 [8700 posts]
7th July 2013 - 16:45

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Pirinase from the pharmacy counter. Swear by it. Couple of sprays in each nostil every morning. Takes a couple of days to build up to full strength so don't expect an instant cure, but stick with it for a week or so and it works wonders. No need for a prescription.

posted by jamesgraemer [29 posts]
7th July 2013 - 21:03

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