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Hay fever injection




That time of year is here again. Suffering with hay fever can make you feel unwell and frustrated. Some people are able to manage this via over the counter antihistamines and nasal sprays but a vast majority of the country will find themselves unable to fend off their allergies.








Hay Fever Symptoms

Symptoms are similar to those of a common cold. However, if you’re

asthmatic, you may find that your symptoms are a little more severe.





Common Symptoms of hay fever include:


· Itchy, watery eyes

· Sneezing and coughing

· Some loss in smell



· Itchy throat, nose, mouth or ears

· Headaches

· Lethargy

· Pain in the temples or forehead

· Shortness of breath (with asthma)

· Tightness of the chest (with asthma)

· Sinus pressure


Hay fever (steroid) injections are becoming increasingly popular when it comes to avoiding all of these issues. The hay fever injection is called Kenalog and is a steroid treatment that alleviates the symptoms of hay fever for individuals with extreme allergies to pollen. It does not cure the hay fever but temporarily suppresses symptoms and the effect can last up to 6 months.

But in order to decide whether or not to get a hay fever jab, it’s important to get as much information as possible. We have looked at all the pros and cons when it comes to the injection.



The pros and cons:


Pros

· Decreases dependences of oral allergy medication.

· Decreases long term cost.

· Can treat multiple allergies at once.


Cons

· Swelling

· Breathing difficulties

· Itchy skin

· Abdominal pain

· Raised blood pressure

· Hypertension

· Not available on the NHS

· Muscle weakness

· Increased sugar levels

· Anaphylaxis

· Mood changes

· Weight gain

· Increased risk of infection


The NHS no longer provides this injection due to lack of evidence supporting its efficacy and high risk of side effects and has been removed from all guidelines. It is no longer licensed for the treatment for hay fever in the UK and is given as an unlicensed treatment in some private clinics. The effect of the steroid can last for more than 3 weeks as it is slowly released from the muscle and you immune system is lowered during this time making you more susceptible to infections such as chickenpox, shingles and flu.


Alternative treatments for Hay fever & Seasonal allergies

It is always more effective to start treatment for hay fever about 3 weeks before the season starting. Many people have had good success by starting treatment early and continuing treatment regularly throughout the season. However, people often forget and only start treatment once they have symptoms and the season has started. This is often difficult to commit too and people often forget and many of us only remember we need treatment after the season is well underway.


Non-medical treatments:

· Stay indoors on high pollen count days

· Cover bare skin as much as possible –pollen on the skin can make the allergy worse– not just the nose, eyes & mouth.

· Wash any pollen off the skin with frequent showers

· Vaseline placed on both nostrils

· Keep windows and doors closed and do not hang clothes out to dry during high pollen counts.


Non prescription medications which you should always try first:

There are a number of effective over-the-counter medications:

· Antihistamines tablets such as Loratadine, Cetirizine and Acravastine

· Eye Drops such as Sodium Cromoglycate.

· Nasal Steroid Sprays such as Beclometasone & Fluticasone.


Prescription Medications:

There are effective prescription only medications such as:

· Prednisolone (steroid) oral tablets

· Antihistamine nasal sprays (Rhinolast) or combination antihistamine with steroids (Dymista)

· Fexofenadine antihistamine tablets

· Montelukast tablets


Steroid tablets can be prescribed for short periods for special events like an outdoor wedding or exams.

Prednisolone given with antihistamines can also be very effective for severe sufferers who are organised enough to start treatment a few weeks prior to the season starting to keep the allergy under control.


Here at Best Health Clinics we do not offer the steroid injection for hay fever due to its high risk of side-effects. However if you book an appointment with our private GP, they can make a full assessment and offer you alternative prescription only medications which can be taken short term to relive your symptoms during the hay fever symptoms


For more information or to book and appointment please call on 01708 477 577 or email info@bhcincs.com



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