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SPRING and summer months bring warmer weather but also manage to bring the nose itching, eye-watering annoyance that is hay fever. Can babies get hay fever?
Hay fever is an allergic reaction to grass and tree pollen
Hay fever, also known as allergic rhinitis, rears its head between May and October when grass and tree pollen levels are at their highest.
Lindsey McManus of hay fever charity Allergy UK advises madeformums.com that yes, babies and young children can be affected by hay fever.
Telling the difference between hay fever and a summer cold in children is difficult to do, but with hay fever babies will have the following symptoms:
⁃ Your baby rubbing their eyes, or their eyes becoming red and puffy due to them being itchy
⁃ Sneezing (Particularly outdoors)
⁃ Having a constantly runny nose that is clear
If symptoms occur outside of May to October, your baby may instead have an allergy to dust mites or pet fur.
Hay fever can also exhibit symptoms similar to that of a virus, however, there are ways of distinguishing between them.
Babies or children with hay fever:
⁃ Don’t have a temperature
⁃ Can have general symptoms of feeling unwell
⁃ Often have symptoms lasting more than a few days unlike a cold
If your baby is rubbing their eyes it could be a sign of hay fever
A doctors diagnosis of hay fever in babies and children is important, as it can be treated or steps can be taken to decrease symptoms.
Unfortunately, babies under one are unable to take anything to alleviate hay fever symptoms.
The main treatment for hay fever in adults and older children is antihistamines.
There are however ways in which parents can help a baby or child suffering from the allergy.
Listening to the daily pollen forecast will tell you how high the count is that day, if it is at 50 or above most sufferers have increased symptoms.
Should there be a high pollen count, keeping away from parks or gardens will prevent severe symptoms, but going to the beach can help with symptoms.
Giving your baby’s face a wash with a cool flannel can remove any residual pollen.
If your baby sneezes more when outside they could have hay fever
Wiping pets fur after they have been outside will prevent pollen from being brought indoors.
Even though the warm temperatures may be tempting, don’t dry clothes or bedding outside on high pollen days as pollen may become attached to the fabric.
If going outside, putting a pair of sunglasses and a wide-brimmed hat on your baby will prevent any airborne pollen from causing itchy eyes.
This is always good to know this time of year! We found this article here.
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