Is Your Hay Making Getting Up Your Nose?
At White’s Tractors we are used to turning a hand to many different things but we don’t claim to be medical experts!
Even so, over the years while providing farm equipment for sale we’ve also picked up a few facts about hay fever and would like to share some of those with you.
1. Although it’s common knowledge that hay fever is caused by allergens that generate a strong reaction in the body, in fact, in many cases that reaction is nothing at all to do with hay. It can come about due to allergies to many different substances in the environment, many of which aren’t related at all to haymaking.
2. The symptoms of a bad cold and an allergic reaction can be very similar. Sneezing, coughing, blocked nose and runny eyes etc. Certain symptoms though are much more commonplace with a viral or bacteriological infection than the much-maligned hay fever. For example, if you have a high temperature or swollen glands, then there is a fair chance you have an infection rather than an allergic reaction.
3. Asthma is sometimes described as an allergy. True, it can be triggered by an allergic reaction but it also has numerous other causes and it can be a very serious condition. So, if you’re feeling wheezy, don’t just assume it is hay fever.
4. It’s a complete myth that farmers and agricultural workers don’t suffer from allergies. Occurrences of hay fever may be higher in urban populations but even so, agricultural folk can get them too.
5. Contrary to some misconceptions, many allergic reactions arise later in the year and are attributable to things such as harvest dust rather than pollen.
6. A predisposition towards allergic reactions tends to run in some families and is therefore genetic. There are medications you can take that can act as a prophylactic. Check the position with your doctor.
If you are working in farming, there probably isn’t a lot you can do to completely insulate yourself from exposure to these allergens. Air filtering can be useful but often impractical, as are face masks in many situations.
So, if you are suffering badly, check to make sure it is a genuine allergy and also see what your Doctor can prescribe to help prevent it. It can be far from a laughing matter for sufferers.