‘Think about hay fever care at home,’ NHS urges as pollen count and website hits both soar in the heat

‘Think about hay fever care at home,’ NHS urges as pollen count and website hits both soar in the heat image

Home » ‘Think about hay fever care at home,’ NHS urges as pollen count and website hits both soar in the heat

The number of hay fever sufferers seeking advice from the NHS website in England has more than tripled in over the last few weeks – reaching a total of over 122,000 visits last week.

Meanwhile, 1,000 people headed for accident and emergency units in Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes on Monday alone, many of them due to the hot, humid weather and high pollen counts.

Dr Sanhita Chakrabarti, deputy medical director at Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes Integrated Care Board, said:

“The recent fine weather has sent the pollen count spiralling upwards, and many people have been experiencing severe hay fever.  But most hay fever symptoms can be effectively managed at home or with medication which is widely and cheaply available in community pharmacies or supermarkets.

“With junior doctors due to take industrial action from Wednesday to Saturday this week, it’s vital that everyone gets prepared for the next few days.  If you or someone you love suffers from hay fever or asthma, plan ahead for this hot spell of weather.

“Make sure you have enough antihistamines and take them as directed.  If your chest symptoms are serious enough for you to require one, make sure you have a well-stocked inhaler too.  Ask for a repeat prescription if you can.

“Extreme temperatures – both hot and cold – are known to increase the risk of heart attacks and strokes.  We can all do our bit to leave accident and emergency services for those who really need them: remember, A&E is for serious injuries and life-threatening emergencies only.  If you are unwell but it’s not an emergency, use 111 Online to check how to get the right care for you.”

Analysis by NHS England, which runs the NHS website, found that Sunday was the busiest day of the year so far for visits to the hay fever page, with almost 28,000 visits in 24 hours – an average of one visit every three seconds. NHS information pages on hay fever treatments have also proved popular during the past few weeks, with over 45,000 people viewing information about the most common antihistamines in the last week.

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