Summer welcomes sunshine…and hay fever   You are here: Home » News Detail

18th May 2017

With summer on the horizon and temperatures increasing, NHS Milton Keynes Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is urging people offering advice for a healthy summer. 

The sun, as welcome as it is, can burn skin that has not been protected with sun cream. According to the British Association of Dermatologists, 80% of people fail to apply sunscreen before going out in the sun and 70% fail to re-apply sunscreen after two hours. 

Summer also brings an increased risk of pollen in the air, which affects hay fever sufferers. NHS Milton Keynes CCG is encouraging people to be prepared by stocking up on hay fever medication and following these steps to help reduce hay fever symptoms.  

  • Pollen counts are at their highest between 7am and 9am, and 5pm and 7pm. So if you can stay inside with doors and windows closed this will help reduce your symptoms.  

  • Check the weather forecast - daily pollen counts are usually given with the weather.  

  • Try to avoid high pollen areas like gardens, parks and woodland (especially if the grass has just been cut). If you do need to work in these areas, a mask and goggles may help. 

  • Pollen can get trapped in your hair, clothes and bed sheets so washing and changing more regularly can help. Keep pollen out of your home by vacuuming and damp-dusting regularly. Pets can also carry pollen so they should be brushed before they come back in the house after being outside. 

  • Applying petroleum jelly around your nostrils can help trap pollen and reduce allergic reaction. It needs to be wiped away and re-applied regularly. Wear wrap-around sunglasses when you go outside. 

  • Pollution and car fumes can make hay fever worse, so try and avoid them where possible. Smoking also worsens symptoms of hay fever, so why not speak with the pharmacist about how they can support you to give up? 

Should you suffer from sneezing, runny nose or itchy eyes, you could have hay fever so pop along to your local pharmacy for advice and over the counter medication. 

Dr Nicola Smith, Chair of NHS Milton Keynes CCG said: “We would strongly recommend patients be aware of the sun’s strength during the summer months and it’s potential to burn exposed skin.  Not only is sunburn painful, but the damage to skin can lead to some cancers. 

Hay fever is very disruptive to sufferers, so arming yourself with hay fever relief for when it strikes can help you cope with the symptoms.” 

Further information on protecting you and your family over the summer months is available from NHS Choices