Hay Fever or Seasonal Allergies

Spring is here and for shay fever allergyome it’s the beginning of the sneezy season! The neighbours are starting to cut the grass but not everyone is happy to smell that wonderful scent of freshly mown grass. Here are a few suggestions for remedies that can help, without side effects or drowsiness. Match your symptoms as closely as possible to one of the remedies below.

Take the remedy in a low potency:  6C or 30C.  Take according to the severity of your symptoms: every two to eight hours for the first day or two. As improvement begins, reduce the frequency to twice or three times daily; stop once you are feeling much better.

If the symptoms return, you can repeat the remedy, taking it only if it helps.

Homeopathic remedies are available in many health stores and pharmacies or visit your local homeopath www.irishhomeopathy.ie

Allium cepa. Eyes and nose stream. Eyes stream with watery, non-irritating discharge. Nose streams with a discharge that burns. Frequent, violent sneezing. Throat may be sore. Hay fever typically aggravated by flower pollens and during the month of August. Symptoms are worse in a stuffy room and better for fresh air.

Arsenicum. Eyes are dry and burn. Nose streams, nasal discharge burns and makes the area under the nostrils red and sore. Frequent, violent sneezing. Lips are cracked. Feels thirsty but only for sips of warm drinks. Generally restless and anxious.

Arundo. Sneezing without a discharge. Everything itches—the roof of mouth, especially the soft palate, the ears, the Eustachian tubes, and the nostrils. Sense of smell is lost. Hay fever typically comes on early in the spring.

Euphrasia. Eyes and nose stream (like Allium cepa) but nasal catarrh is non-irritating and discharge from eyes burns (opposite of Allium cepa). Eyes are sore, red, and very sensitive to light, especially sunlight. Compelled to blink eyes constantly.

Natrum muriaticum. Eyes and nose stream after sneezing. Discharge from the eyes is watery and profuse. Eyes itch and burn. Nasal discharge is profuse and resembles raw egg white and alternates with a blocked up nose. Sense of smell and taste are both lost. Hay fever which is generally worse for the hot weather and often accompanied by cold sores around the mouth and/or nose.

Nux vomica. Eyes water. Nose runs in the day (with burning, watery catarrh) and is blocked at night—on the side lain on. Frequent violent sneezing. Hay fever is often accompanied by a sore throat and/or headache. Generally irritable.

Pulsatilla. Nasal discharge is thick, yellow-green and bland (non-irritating) and watery in the fresh air. Sense of smell and taste are lost. Generally worse in stuffy hot atmospheres and better for fresh (cool) air.

Sabadilla. Persistent, violent sneezing with great itching in nose. Eyes are red, and they water and burn. Hay fever which is greatly aggravated by flower pollen.

Sulphur. Nose is dry and itchy. Frequent sneezing. Eyes itch and burn, are sensitive to light, and feel gritty. Eyelids are red and itchy; they water (mostly in the daytime) and are glued together in the morning. Generally thirsty and worse in the hot weather.

If you are no better after a week it’s likely that the remedy is incorrect. Choose another one or seek professional advice. If self-prescribing doesn’t help you or if your symptoms are severe, then do seek the advice of a homeopath.

The presence of allergies indicates an underlying weakness that ideally needs constitutional treatment from a homeopathic practitioner. There is often a family history of allergies … a parent or grandparent with asthma, eczema or hay fever. Homeopaths prefer to treat a hay fever sufferer through the winter months to strengthen their resistance to pollen and other allergens and deal with the underlying allergic disposition, and find that it takes several years for symptoms of allergy to gradually abate.

Isopathic remedies

An isopathic remedy is made from the toxin or chemical or pollen that is apparently causing the allergy, and is prepared by homeopathic methods, i.e., diluted and succussed to a certain potency (usually the 30C). Since most of these substances have not been proved (tested on healthy people) they cannot be prescribed according to the homeopathic Law of Similars because there is no symptom picture against which they can be matched. Their use is more haphazard and less individualized than homeopathy’s matching of symptoms from the provings with those experienced by the patient. But there are times when isopathic remedies can be successful, especially when they are used as an occasional adjunct remedy.

Mixed Pollen or Mixed Grasses are combination remedies that have been formulated from the most common allergens (substances that cause an allergic response). Some people have found them to be helpful, either on their own or in alternation with one of the above homeopathic remedies. Take the one that affects you—if it is the flower and/or tree pollens then take Mixed Pollen; if it is grasses then take Mixed Grasses. Early spring hay fever is often due to pollens from trees while the later spring and summer hay fevers are from flower pollens. The later summer and early fall hay fevers are usually caused by ragweed pollens and moulds.

Scottish researcher David Reilly (Glasgow Royal Infirmary) conducted a double blind clinical trial on the use of mixed grass pollens in the 30C potency on patients with active hay fever (published in The Lancet, October 18, 1986, entitled, “Is homoeopathy a placebo response?”). It showed a statistically significant reduction in hay fever symptoms in patients who received mixed pollens versus patients who received only placebo. In another trial, Reilly replicated these results using house-dust mite in the 30C potency for patients with allergic asthma (published in The Lancet, December 10, 1994, “Is evidence for homoeopathy reproducible?”).