Hayfever & pollution

Ever wondered why your hayfever symptoms are sometimes triggered during your morning commute, or noticed itchy eyes and a runny nose when you’re out and about in the city centre? If that sounds familiar, you could be experiencing the effects of something we’ve called ‘pollenution’. So what exactly is it?

‘Pollenution’ is the name we’ve given to the perfect storm of pollen combined with air pollution in urban areas. It’s thought that an estimated nine million people in the UK may experience its effects, and it’s not just in the summer months; it can peak as early as April and May, meaning a long few months for city-dwelling sufferers.

Watch the video to find out more about ‘pollenution’ and its effects.

How to help prevent hayfever symptoms

If you have to go outdoors when the pollen count is high, try the following to help manage your symptoms:

• Close windows – keep car windows up when driving and use air conditioning instead when it’s warm outside

• Stay away from doors – doors that open and close frequently, like in restaurants or shops, can allow for pollen to enter the area, so staying away from them can help prevent symptoms from occurring

• Consider using petroleum jelly – Boots pharmacist Natalie Masters suggests placing some petroleum jelly on the insides of your nostrils. “This can help prevent the pesky pollen and pollution particles from sticking to the lining of your nose which could trigger your hayfever symptoms.”

• Wear sunglasses – not just a fashion statement, Natalie also recommends wearing shades. “As a hayfever sufferer myself I have come to rely on wraparound sunglasses over the years to help keep my eyes free from irritants that can make my symptoms worse, whether I’m in the town or the countryside.”

How can Boots help?

At Boots we have a range of products to help keep your hayfever symptoms at bay. Whether it’s itchy eyes or a runny nose, our treatments can help provide some relief, meaning you can still enjoy the spring and summer months to the full.

*Boots Hayfever Omnibus survey of 2025 people, March 2018. Q2 Response: In what environment do you think hayfever symptoms are likely to be worse? 230 of 2025 people (11.4%) answered ‘in the city’, meaning that 89% don’t realise symptoms can be worse in the city

**Boots Hayfever Omnibus survey of 2025 people, March 2018. Q3 Response: What do you associate most with making hayfever symptoms worse? 195 out of 2025 people (9.6%) answered ‘car fumes/air pollution’, meaning that 1 in 10 associate air pollution with making hayfever symptoms worse