Examples of products available to buy include:
|Antihistamine tablets and syrup|
Generally effective at controlling symptoms of hayfever.
|Antihistimines are more effective if they are taken before symptoms start rather than after. Some older antihistamine tablets such as chlorphenamine can cause drowsiness.|
Newer antihistamines are unlikely to cause drowsiness and include cetirizine, loratadine, and acrivastine. If you drive or operate machinery ask the community pharmacist which tablets would be best for you.
Useful if you suffer nasal symptoms and can be used instead of, or in addition to, antihistamine tablets.
|Steroid nasal sprays suppress the allergic reaction and inflammation of hayfever and take about 3 days to work. They are best started before the hayfever season begins and used throughout the season even if your symptoms have improved.|
Antihistamine nasal sprays can be useful for people who have symptoms now and again.
Nasal decongestant sprays are useful if you suffer from a blocked nose, however they can only be used for 7 days as longer use can cause rebound congestion and block your nose up again. You may find inhalants (eucalyptus, menthol and Olbas Oil) helpful to ease blocked and stuffy noses.
|Eye drops||If your eye symptoms are not controlled by oral antihistamines, eye drops containing sodium cromoglicate or lodoxamide may be useful.|
If you wear contact lenses you should check with a community pharmacist or your optician before using eye drops.
|Other useful treatments||Simple pain relief (e.g. paracetamol or ibuprofen) can help with headaches and sinus pain. Throat lozenges can help ease tickly throats and palates. Decongestant tablets should relieve blocked noses.|
You can also access advice on hayfever self-care 24 hours a day on the NHS Choices website here