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Hay fever prevention

2-minute read

Reducing your exposure to the substances that trigger your hay fever should ease your symptoms. It is therefore important to try and find out what the allergen is.

However, there are some general preventative steps you can take that might help.

If your allergen is pollen:

  • Avoid cutting grass, playing or walking in grassy areas, and camping. If you have to do so, wear a mask or take a non-drowsy antihistamine
  • Wear wraparound sunglasses to stop pollen getting into your eyes when you are outdoors.
  • Change your clothes and take a shower after being outdoors to remove the pollen on your body.
  • Keep the windows closed at home and in the car, and use recirculating air-conditioning in the car.
  • Try to stay indoors when the pollen index (or count) is high, for example before midday, during windy days or after a thunderstorm. You can find the pollen index via online weather information services such as Weatherzone (www.weatherzone.com.au), or the pollen forecast.
  • If possible, avoid drying clothes outside. This will help prevent bringing pollen into your house.
  • Consider planting a low-allergen garden around your home and remove any weeds or trees if you are sensitive to them.

Preventative steps for most allergens include:

  • Damp dust regularly because dusting with a wet cloth, rather than a dry one, will collect the dust and stop any pollen from being spread around.
  • Keep pets out of the house when your symptoms flare up. If your pet does come inside, wash them regularly to remove any allergens from their fur.
  • Don't smoke or let other people smoke in your house. Smoking and breathing in other people's smoke will irritate the lining of your nose, eyes, throat and airways, and can make your symptoms worse.
  • If your hay fever is due to allergens in your workplace, you should advise your employer of this fact so that you can work together to reduce your exposure.

Last reviewed: July 2017

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