Between 10% and 30% of the world’s population will experience problems caused by hay fever in the springtime. Nose leaking, sneezing, throat irritation … are just some of the reasons why a lot of people live under stress when the pollen begins to spread around us. Why are we talking about pollen and we say hay? Should we beg for the rain? Is pollen really falling at night? There are too many myths and misconceptions about hay fever, which can significantly interfere with you in removing symptoms of allergy from your life. Here are some truths, but also the misconception about hay fever.
Misconception No 1: Historical evidence that Hay Fever is not just a name that has nothing to do with hay
It’s weird that the reaction to pollen is called ‘hay fever’; however, in the 19th century, people assumed that the problem is causing fresh chopped hay, where the name is coming from. British physicist James Bostock first followed the symptoms of allergy in the spring and summer months and managed to bring them in contact with a freshly cracked hay. He called this condition “summercater”. Also, he was the first man who noticed that for people with this problem, should be going to the sea for more significant relief. Further, hay fever was associated with pollen in 1859, when another British scientist, Charles Blackley, binds his sneezing with the flowers and observed it was caused by pollen, not only from the flowers but also the one transmitted by air and produced by grass and trees.
The immune system of some people reacts to the pollen as a virus. This then activates the body to respond with all known symptoms of pollen fever.
Hay fever begins in childhood, and symptoms are getting weaker as you age. In 20% of cases, they disappear entirely. Studies conducted in Sweden had shown that it is most likely to go away when people were in their 50s. However, there are people in whom the symptoms will appear every spring and summer, for the rest of their lives.
Equally, there are signs that people in the later years felt the hay fever for the first time.
Misconception No. 2: Rain will make the symptoms of hay fever disappear
Many believe rain can reduce pollen spread through the air and therefore, an allergic reaction. However, while light rain really helps, heavy rainfall will cause a counter effect. Tests from South Korea assumed that it was compared with weather conditions every day, and noted that a more significant number of patients appeared to a doctor with symptoms of hay fever in days when of heavy rains. It looks like rain, mixed with wind, is spreading more pollen.
Misconception No. 3: Hay fever is more pronounced during the day
The first advice for people suffering from hay fever is to stay indoors during the pollen period. The fact that you will avoid going out may help a little, but it is all individually and depending on the type of pollen. For example, the level of the mugwort pollen is deficient at night, but at the same time, ragweed is on the rise. As temperatures rise during the day, the air that moves the pollen grows, but at night pollen again falls, improving the concentration at the soil level. At dawn, some people find that their pelvic fever has become worse.
Misconception No. 4: Honey helps to get rid of the hay fever
This seems to be just a myth, even if the influence of taking honey is not sufficiently observed. In one rare study from the United States, men were given one of three substances: pasteurized honey, unpasteurized honey or corn syrup. They were told to take one spoon a day to reduce the symptoms of hay fever. The study did not show any visible results.
Natural honey can make a slight difference, but the type with birch pollen can help, it is believed.
Misconception No. 5: Taking Antihistamines against fever can make us sleepy
Antihistamines prevent the action of the chemical histamine, that body releases because it thinks it is under the influence of pollen protein. This way, they alleviate the symptoms of fever. The earlier types of antihistamines really caused drowsiness as a side effect. However, today’s second-generation antihistamines cannot cross the blood-brain barrier easily, which prevents the feeling of sleepiness and drowsiness.