Health & Wellness

Hay Fever Season | Symptoms & Remedies

As one of the most common allergic reactions, hay fever is estimated to affect more than 10 million people in England. (1) But what causes hay fever and how can we ease symptoms? Read on to find out. 

In this article you’ll find:  

What Is Hay Fever? 

Hay fever is an allergic reaction to pollen, the fine powder found in plants. Symptoms typically begin when pollen comes into contact with the mouth, nose, eyes and throat.  

There are three main types of pollen allergy: grass, tree and weed. Symptoms and levels of each type can vary, which is why you might suffer from hay fever one year and not the next.  

Causes Of Hay Fever  

The symptoms of this allergy are pretty well known, but what causes it? When hay fever begins, your immune system incorrectly identifies an airborne substance (pollen) as harmful. When you next meet pollen, your immune system reacts by sending chemicals such as histamine into your bloodstream. 2 

When Is Hay Fever Season? 

The UK pollen season lasts for several months, starting in January and ending in September. Warm, humid and windy weather makes hay fever worse as it creates the perfect conditions for pollen to spread.

Hay Fever Pollen Calendar

Hay Fever Symptoms

The symptoms of hay fever differ from those of a cold. A typical cold lasts around 3-7 days and can cause a fever, runny nose and body aches. Hay fever can last for months and causes a runny nose, itchy throat and a cough.

Common symptoms of hay fever include:

  • Sneezing and Coughing
  • Itchy nose and throat
  • Nasal congestion and runny nose
  • Decreased sense of smell
  • Itchy, watery eyes
  • Headache around the forehead
  • Fatigue

Hay Fever Remedies

Vitamins and supplements can help to ease and prevent allergy symptoms. Remedies include:

Vitamin C

An an essential nutrient for the immune system, vitamin C can be beneficial for allergies (immune reactions to substances in the environment.) Recent studies show that vitamin C acts as a natural antihistamine, reducing swelling and inflammation at the site of a reaction. 3

Vitamin D

Vitamin D is made naturally by the body through sunlight on the skin. Those with hay fever can struggle to spend time outdoors, limiting their ability to make vitamin D. This nutrient is required for immune function, meaning deficiency could make hay fever symptoms worse.


Bromelain is an enzyme found in pineapple. Although more research is needed on this nutrient, initial testing suggests that bromelain has anti-allergic and anti-inflammatory properties. 4

Fish Oils

The omega-3 fatty acids in fish oil are thought to reduce inflammation by suppressing proteins including TNF-α, IL-1 and IL-6 that promote it. These oils also have a variety of benefits for heart and brain health. 5


Curcumin is a natural compound found in plants of the Curcuma longa species. When given to patients with allergic rhinitis (pollen allergy) for two months, curcumin eased nasal congestion and reduced allergy symptoms including sneezing. 6

Myvitamins Curcumin Capsules are enriched with vitamin D, an important nutrient for immune function and bone health.

How To Prevent Hay Fever

Whilst allergies cannot be completely avoided, some lifestyle changes can help to prevent the onset of hay fever.

Stay Indoors As Much As Possible

Unfortunately, the easiest way to avoid hay fever is to stay away from pollen. This means not going outside as much and keeping a note of when the pollen count is high.

Keep All Windows Closed

Keep your home pollen-free by closing windows and doors, especially in the summer months.

Wear Sunglasses And A Mask When Outdoors

Sunglasses and a mask will help to block the pollen particles from your eyes, nose and mouth.

Change Your Clothes After Returning Home

Pollen sticks to almost everything, including your clothes, hair and even pets. Showering and changing your clothes straight after being outside will prevent them from spreading.

Dust And Vacuum Regularly

Whilst pollen can attach itself to your clothes, it can also cover your sofa, carpets and more. Make sure you’re cleaning regularly in hay fever season. Dusting with a wet cloth is better for collecting the pollen.

Take Home Message

Hay fever is a common pollen allergy that causes a whole host of symptoms including sneezing, a tickly throat and itchy eyes. Recent studies show that diet can help to prevent hay fever symptoms. In particular, vitamin C, bromelain and fish oils are especially effective.

Talk To Your Doctor

If your hay fever symptoms become unmanageable or untreatable, please seek advice from a medical professional.


What Is Hay Fever?

Hay Fever, otherwise known as allergic rhinitis is an allergy to pollen, a fine powder found in plants.

What Causes Hay Fever?

This allergy is caused when the immune system perceives pollen as harmful. This results in the production of histamine and other chemicals.

When Is Hay Fever Season?

Hay Fever season lasts from January to September.

What Are Some Common Symptoms Of Hay Fever?

Symptoms include a runny nose, itchy eyes, fatigue and a sore throat.

What Should I Do If I Have Hay Fever?

If you’re looking to ease hay fever symptoms, changes to your diet and lifestyle can help. Contact a doctor if your allergy is especially severe or if you are concerned.

How Can I Prevent Hay Fever?

Try to stop the spread of pollen by showering and changing your clothes after you’ve been outside. Try to stay indoors on high pollen count days, but if it’s unavoidable, wear sunglasses and a mask to block particles from your eyes, nose and mouth.


Katie Lambert

Katie Lambert

Writer and expert

After studying History at The University of Leeds, Katie moved back to her home town of Manchester to start a career in content writing. Katie has a passion for health and fitness and enjoys running in her spare time. Her favourite topics to write about include healthy recipes, performance strategies and general wellbeing.