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Homeopathy for Hay Fever

A natural treatment without side-effects

H

omeopathy can be successfully used to manage symptoms of hay fever. Consistently applied for several allergy seasons, homeopathy can banish hay fever altogether.

Homeopathy uses natural remedies taken by mouth instead of pharmaceutical sprays, tablets and suspensions. Homeopathic medicines have no side-effects nor do they produce lasting negative outcomes. Homeopathy aims to manage unpleasant hay fever symptoms as they appear, but also works from the inside to reduce the allergic tendency which causes hay fever in the first place.

Homeopathic hay fever treatment produces an improvement in symptoms within 1-2 weeks. The disappearance of symptoms whilst taking homeopathic remedies may take 1- 2 months. It may take up to 3-6 seasons of consistent homeopathic treatment to completely stop hay fever so that treatment is not required anymore.

Typical symptoms of hay fever

These appear during the spring and summer months and affect the eyes, nose, mouth, throat and chest. There may be itching, watering, sneezing, redness, swelling, breathing difficulty and coughing. Hay fever may also cause tiredness and lethargy, and some people experience headaches.

Hay fever is an allergy to pollen

In most cases, hay fever is an allergy to pollen. In some cases, people experience similar symptoms outside the pollen season. This would be called “allergic rhinitis” rather than hay fever. Allergic rhinitis is the medical term for nasal discharge caused by an allergy, and this can be due to a variety of triggers such as pollen, food, chemicals, and pharmaceuticals. Allergic rhinitis can therefore happen in the winter or any other time of the year, even when there is no pollen around.

Hay fever symptoms are caused by histamine

Hay fever and allergic rhinitis symptoms are caused by an overproduction of the body’s own histamine. Histamine causes the mucus membranes in the eyes, nose, throat and lower airways to feel irritated, itchy, burning and swollen. Histamine also causes the secretion of watery mucus to wash out the irritation and move it out of the body. Histamine is therefore an important body substance, as it protects our upper and lower airways from unwanted substances. In the case of hay fever and allergic rhinitis, however, the body is producing histamine by mistake.

The body’s own histamine also has important effects on stomach acid, digestion, heart and blood vessels.

Conventional medical treatment is potentially detrimental in the long run

For uncomplicated hay fever not involving breathing difficulties, doctors prescribe anti-histamines to reduce the allergic reaction. In severe cases, oral steroid medication is used to reduce the activity of the immune system. If asthmatic breathing occurs, inhalers will be prescribed too.

Anti-histamines have to be taken daily throughout the season. Whilst they can be life-saving in severe cases of allergy (anaphylaxis), this is rarely required in hay fever, because for most people the symptoms are located in eyes and nose. Anti-histamines taken daily can have long-term consequences. They disrupt the normal response of the immune system and make a person more and more sensitive to pollen, but also to other allergic triggers. Commonly, we therefore see hay fever getting worse from season to season. Further, other allergies may start up, such as allergies to foods or chemicals. After a few seasons, use of anti-histamines can therefore lead to a lengthening of the allergy season so that eventually a person might experience a watery, irritated nose all year round.

Since the body’s own histamine also has effects on our heart, blood vessels and digestion, taking a daily anti-histamine year after year can have consequences in many other areas of the body. This is why the use of pharmaceutical anti-histamines should be reserved for life-threatening breathing difficulties called anaphylaxis. At all other times, it would be advisable to find more natural and safer methods to reduce allergic symptoms. Homeopathy is one such method, and many people all over the world have benefited from homeopathic hay fever treatment.

Hay Fever is medically classed as an allergy which tends to run in families (atopy)

Medically, hay fever belongs to a class of conditions referred to as “atopic”. This means it is a kind of allergy that tends to run in families. Three other very common atopic conditions are related to hay fever and these are asthma, eczema and urticaria. Because the inheritance of atopic conditions is so very strong, we usually see several generations of one family affected with a mix of eczema, urticaria, asthma and hay fever.

There are many children and adults with hay fever who also suffer from eczema and urticaria or who used to have eczema in the past. Some even experience allergic asthma either during the hay fever season or outside the season, as a complication of the common cold.

Because of the combination of atopic conditions in one person, we commonly find that a lot of pharmaceuticals have been used, even outside the allergy season.

Homeopathic treatment aims to gradually reduce the need for pharmaceutical medication whilst strengthening the body from the inside. During the treatment, the body's tendency to react in an allergic way steadily diminishes.

Homeopathic treatments are highly personalised

In some people, itchy and watery eyes are the worst complaint, whereas others suffer from long sneezing spells which leave them exhausted and with a sore throat. Yet a third group of people finds themselves with an intolerably itchy soft palate or a constant post-nasal drip irritating their throat and voice. A good homeopath will listen carefully to the description of the symptoms. Any accompanying circumstances such as how long the condition has been present and which pharmaceutical measures have been used are also important. To arrive at a holistic picture, other areas of health such as sleep and diet will also be discussed .

Stress and anxiety have a tremendous effect on the immune system and increase the risk of developing allergies. Acute stress can also make allergic symptoms much worse at times. A good homeopath will therefore pay attention to the mental and emotional aspects of a patient’s life. This is especially important in teenagers, as the height of the hay fever season coincides with exam time in May and June every year. Homeopathic hay fever treatment does not cause drowsiness or lethargy; in fact, most people experience a pleasant improvement in motivation and energy levels.

Homeopathy gradually reduces the need for pharmaceuticals

In the first season, a good homeopath will bring about substantial relief from the hay fever symptoms. This is achieved with homeopathic tablets or drops taken by mouth. The usual dose is 3 times per day at the very beginning, for about 1 month. Substantial relief will normally set in within 1-2 weeks of starting the treatment, but often improvement will be noticeable within 24 hours. Sometimes, 2-3 different remedies need to be tried to find the one which works as well as, or even better than, a pharmaceutical anti-histamine.

At the same time, the homeopathic treatment aims to gradually rebalance the immune system so that the dosage can be reduced to once per day. In some rare cases, the treatment in the first season is enough to never experience hay fever again in subsequent years. But more often than not, to achieve a complete absence of symptoms, homeopathic treatment has to continue even outside the season, albeit at much-reduced intensity. This is because there is an underlying allergic tendency which needs to be re-balanced so that the immune system does not mistakenly react to pollen or any other substance anymore.

In this way, it might take several years to completely eradicate hay fever. However, pharmaceuticals for hay fever should not be required during this time. Further, the benefits of the homeopathic treatment are not only noticeable during the hay fever season, but extend to other times and indeed to other health issues a person might have. This is because good homeopathic treatment is always holistic and benefits the person as a whole in all life situations.

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