Hay fever survival strategies during pregnancy

Pregnancy hormones can aggravate seasonal allergy symptoms. Time to fight back with the latest bump-friendly hay fever hacks

Know your foe

Around one in five people in the UK suffers from hay fever, and pregnancy hormones (which may increase nasal congestion) can make symptoms worse. Although most meds are not bump-friendly, there are other ways to help you get relief. First line of defense: be on constant pollen alert. The Met Office makes it easier with their five-day pollen forecasts. The count is at its highest first thing in the morning, in the evening and at night. Try to stay inside when the count is high. A good excuse for a weekend lie-in…

Defend your nose

Smear petroleum jelly (or a barrier balm) around your nostrils to help trap pollen and prevent it entering your nose in the first place.

Shield your peepers

Eyes streaming more tears than when you last watched Call the Midwife? Research suggests patting HayMax Pure Organic Drug Free Balm along the socket bone under your eyes, even along the inside edge of sunglasses may help. Remember, wraparound styles are the best anti-pollen protectors. More stylish, too.

Don't let the enemy in

Take off pollen-covered clothes and throw them in the wash as soon as you get home, so you don’t trek pollen all over. And don’t hang washing outside, as pollen may cling to it. Washing your hair will also help stop pollen spreading, particularly onto bedding.

Book some leave

In a survey of more than 2,000 hay fever sufferers by the National Pollen and Aerobiology Research Unit, there was a clear link between daily stresses and severity of hay fever symptoms. Nearly seven in 10 stressed-out hay fever sufferers rated symptoms as unbearable or debilitating. And, no surprise, reducing stresses helped soothe things. What better excuse to book a babymoon?

Beware smog in the city

“Hay fever” is a bit of misnomer: symptoms can be much worse in towns than the countryside. That’s because, says Boots pharmacist Scot Taylor, “on hot, sunny days, the combination of extra pollen and increase in air pollution can create a smog, trapping pollen and preventing it from escaping into the upper atmosphere.”