For those of you who suffer from hayfever you will have noticed the recent rise in the pollen count
and may well be finding that symptoms are affecting the quality of day to day life.

Hayfever is something I have battled with since I was an adolescent and it has blighted many summers of my youth. I now have a very manageable level of allergy only at the height of summer rather than a
debilitating level of symptoms from March to September, so I thought I would share with you the
things that have really helped me to ease the hayfever symptoms

1. Use a Neti pot everyday

This is basically a nasal cleansing practise to flush out particles, ease congestion and soothe
sinuses. I recommend using it morning and evening as part of your daily routine. For more
information, see my blog post here.

2. Know your food tolerancesgreen and red healthy food

Any foods you don’t digest well can worsen your hayfever symptoms. All the mucous membranes of the body communicate with each other, so when one area is irritated (in this case the intestines) other areas also then produce more mucous (in this case the sinuses).

Personally I’m not great with wheat and dairy and I notice a marked difference in symptoms, reducing when I avoid them and worsening when I indulge!


3. Wear glasses or shades

The barrier method. Very simply they help to shield your eyes from particles such as dust pollen and pollution so the bigger the better! If you wear contact lenses, it may well be worth trying wearing glasses instead for a while as the lenses may add to the level of irritation in sensitive eyes.

4. Use a balm for your nose

I like to use pawpaw ointment, and since having a baby have found that lanolin nipple cream also works very well! Both are soothing and have skin healing properties. Simply rub a little on the inside of your nostrils, the balm soothes the skin and catches particles to help prevent further irritation. It can also help to heal the outside of the nose if it has become raw from lots of tissue use.

5. Keep windows and doors shut in early morning and late evening

Particles tend to be lower in the air at those times and are therefore more likely to enter your home. It’s better to air your home at night when the pollen has settled on the ground until morning and the air is cooler then too. By the same token, try to avoid being outdoors if possible during sunrise and sunset hours to avoid exposure.

6. Suck an ice cube

ice cube for hayfeverAn allergic response causes inflammation and increased blood flow to the respiratory tract.Sucking an ice cube cools the roof of the mouth which is just under the nasal passages and cools the blood flow to the head.

If the roof of your mouth feels hot and itchy that’s a good indication this will help. A yoga alternative is a cooling breath called Sheetali, or it’s variation Seetkari. Both should be practised with the guidance of a qualified teacher.


7. Shower before bed

This washes off particles you have picked up in the day so you are less likely to be irritated while you sleep, and afterwards as you dry and moisturise your feet you can also do your own reflexology!

8. Self reflexology

Some regular self-reflexology between sessions can really boost the effect of treatments. Strongly massage the toes from base to tip to work the sinus points. With the thumb work across the base of the toes to access the eye and ear area and massaging the ball of the foot under toes 2-4 will work the lung reflex area. Click on here to explore the AoR interactive map of the feet.

Note: This article is based on the personal experience of the author and is not intended to take the place of any medical advice.

About the author Jenni Stone

Jenni is an experienced reflexologist and yoga teacher and has been in practise for over 15 years. She is available for reflexology and one-to- one private yoga every Wednesday at Restore Health & Wellbeing in Yoga Balance.