Expert / 20 March, 2024 / Charlotte Bligh

Navigating Hay Fever: A Parent’s Holistic Guide To A Blooming Spring

I am sure I speak for most of us when I say the arrival of Spring could not come soon enough. Bringing lighter mornings and evenings, blossoming flowers and vibrant colours. However, it often brings with it the challenge of hay fever, especially for our little ones. Using a combination of lifestyle tips, supplements and holistic medication you can help ease your little one’s symptoms. 

Hay fever, or allergic rhinitis, is triggered by allergens like pollen from trees, grasses, and weeds. When these allergens interact with a sensitive child’s nose, eyes, or throat, the immune system overreacts, leading to symptoms such as frequent sneezing, a runny or congested nose, itchy and watery eyes, and fatigue due to disrupted sleep.

These symptoms can start from early spring with the release of tree pollen. Commonly children are most affected during late spring and early summer due to grass pollen. If your little one experiences these symptoms into later summer, it can be due to weed pollen.

Depending on what time of the year your little one suffers from hay fever there are several things you can do to help combat these symptoms, including these lifestyle tips: 

Outdoor Timing:

Plan outdoor activities during times of lower pollen counts, typically early morning or late afternoon, to minimize exposure.

Keep Windows Closed:

Create a pollen-safe zone by keeping windows closed during high pollen seasons and consider using air purifiers to reduce indoor allergens.

Personal Hygiene:

Encourage regular handwashing and changing clothes after outdoor play to minimise pollen exposure and maintain cleanliness. Avoid drying bedding, towels and clothes outside. 

Pets and Pollen:

Be mindful of pets bringing pollen indoors. Regular grooming and bathing can help minimize pollen brought into the home.

Allergen-Proof Bedding:

Invest in allergen-proof bedding to create a sanctuary for restful sleep, reducing nighttime symptoms.

Alongside the lifestyle tips, you also might want to try certain foods and supplements to manage their symptoms: 

  • Quercetin: Incorporate foods rich in quercetin, a natural antihistamine to help alleviate hay fever symptoms. These foods include berries, citrus fruits, onions and leafy greens. 
  • Vitamin C: Boost your child’s immune system with vitamin C-rich foods to reduce the severity of hay fever symptoms including oranges, strawberries and bell peppers. 
  • Probiotics: Support a healthy gut, positively impacting the immune system and potentially offering relief from hay fever symptoms. Why not try making a gut-friendly ice cream using live yogurt.
  • Omega-3 Fatty Acids: Integrate sources of omega-3 fatty acids, such as fish oil, into your child’s diet for their anti-inflammatory effects.
  • Local Honey: While scientific evidence is limited, some parents find relief for their children’s hay fever symptoms by incorporating local honey, which may contain small amounts of local pollen.

In addition to medical approaches like antihistamines, nasal corticosteroids, and allergy shots, holistic approaches play a crucial role.

Saline Nasal Irrigation:

Rinse nasal passages with saline solution to clear allergens and promote easier breathing.

Eucalyptus Essential Oil:

Use Eucalyptus oil in a diffuser or spray to reduce nasal congestion.

By combining medical treatments, holistic approaches, lifestyle adjustments, and carefully chosen supplements, parents can help their little ones navigate hay fever with greater ease. Remember, each child is unique, so it may take some experimentation to find the combination that works best for your little one.

Baba West Snuffle Pillow Mist

For little ones battling hay fever, the Baba West Snuffle Pillow Mist (for infants 6 months +) is a perfect natural remedy to help ease a stuffy nose. This natural blend of essential oils, including Eucalyptus, Pine, and Thyme, is not just soothing but also packed with anti-viral and antibacterial properties. Eucalyptus, a hero ingredient, works wonders by easing inflammation and clearing up congestion.

Simply spritz it on a handkerchief or muslin during the day to help them breathe easier, and at night, a few sprays on their pillow, pyjamas, or muslin.

 

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