If you’ve got a child with hay fever, it can be very tiring for both parent and child. And ensuring they get a get night’s sleep can be even more of a problem than usual, especially if the weather’s hot. A build up of pollen in your child’s bedroom during the day can cause bad symptoms at night. So keeping their bedroom free from pollen and implementing a regular nightly routine is a good plan. Here top airborne allergens expert and parent of two with hay fever, Max Wiseberg, gives his personal tips on how families can get a good night’s sleep despite the sneezes!…
“Reducing the amount of pollen getting into the body at night can help lessen or even prevent the symptoms of hay fever. Every child can tolerate a certain amount of pollen without reaction. But once this level is exceeded – called the trigger level – hay fever symptoms start to occur. So if you help your child stay below this level at night, they won’t get the symptoms and their (and your) sleep won’t be affected.”
“It’s best to have a nightly routine set in place before bed time. Encourage your child to have a warm bath or shower before sleeping to remove pollen particles from their hair and body. Clear their nasal passages; either sniff up sterilised water and blow it out again through the nostrils, or use a saline nasal spray to clear pollen from their nose. Get them to apply an allergen barrier balm, such as HayMax Kids (www.haymax.biz), to the nostrils and around the bones of the eyes. HayMax has been proven trap more than a third of pollen, as well as dust and pet allergens, before they enter the body.”
“Vacuum the house regularly, especially your child’s bed, fabrics, such as bed covers and curtains, and mattress, in order to remove pollen, dust and pet allergen particles. Try using bedding which is allergen-proof. Damp dust regularly to help reduce the amount of pollen on surfaces and help avoid allergens being dispersed into the air. Wash bedding and soft toys regularly to remove allergens, and dry them indoors rather than on a clothes line to prevent pollen particles being blown onto them by the wind.”
“Keep windows closed, especially in your child’s bedroom, and, if it’s practical, you could use an air purifier or conditioner (preferably with a HEPA (High Efficiency Particle Arresting) filter) to capture the pollen and dust particles, and circulate the air.”
“There are other things you can encourage in your child to help them get off to sleep and get a restful night. They should avoid using tablets, mobile phones and computers an hour before sleep, and not have a TV in the bedroom. Don’t let them eat and drink cola, energy drinks, coffee or dark chocolate in the afternoon as the caffeine can keep them awake. Encourage your child to do some daily exercise (at least 20 minutes a day) so that they feel physically tired, as this will also help them to sleep better.”
HayMax organic drug-free allergen barrier balms retail at £6.99 per pot and are available from Holland & Barrett; selected Morrisons, Waitrose and Boots; independent chemists, pharmacists and health stores; on 01525 406600 and from www.haymax.biz.