Dr Tim Bond – Ways to reduce pollen exposure
The conventional allergy season is being turned on its head. With global warming triggering changes in seasonal allergens, we’re seeing a marked increase in allergies. Also, pandemic related social changes, with more time spent indoors, has meant that allergies caused by indoor pollution are on the rise.
The UK has some of the highest rates of allergic conditions in the world, with over 20% of the population affected by one or more allergic disorders.
The study showed that the pollen season is starting 20 days earlier than it did three decades ago and lasts for ten days longer. To add to the misery of hay fever, there’s now 21 per cent more pollen around than there was 32 years ago in 1990. Tree pollens usually start to peak between March and June and grass pollen, which affects most people with hay fever, between May and the end of July, but timings for pollen allergens our expanding with global warming.
How can we help reduce pollen exposure?
The power of plants
The pandemic may have focused our minds on respiratory health, but it has also brought home the power of natural remedies. “Essential oils, such as lavender, eucalyptus, lemon and geranium (pelargonium), reduce the risk of respiratory issues by tackling common triggers for symptoms: airborne bacteria and viruses, fungal spores and house-dust mites,” says Dr Tim Bond, natural health expert says. “The extraordinary healing power of nature and plants, and essential oils in particular, has been recognised for millennia. There are 600 direct references to essential oils in the Bible and almost 200 references to the use of aromas for mental, spiritual, and physical healing.”
What about indoor air pollution?
One of many learning curves of the pandemic has been the growing awareness of the importance of air quality and purity. As a policy paper for the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development explains, “Good air quality not only has the merit of potentially reducing the vulnerability of individuals and communities to pandemics similar to COVID-19, but also of generating wider benefits for public health, wellbeing and resilience.”
Research, from Puressentiel, the brains behind the evidence backed plant-based health products for everyday wellness needs, reveals that only one in three people (35%) take any measures to improve air quality in their homes, and in most cases (71%) they only go as far as to open a window. This is despite the fact that at least 9,000 deaths every year are attributed to indoor air pollution in the UK and indoor air levels of many pollutants may be 2-10 times higher than outdoor levels.
Given that people now spend on average 90% of their time indoors, these facts combine to make a ticking timebomb for our health; over 5.4 million people in the UK are receiving treatment for asthma.
Common indoor pollutants which may cause health problems include, dust mites, spores from mould and fungus and animal dander. In a real-world poll from Puressentiel:
- Almost half of those surveyed (47%) had, for no apparent reason, experienced sneezes, coughs or an itchy throat or eyes — classic signs of allergy or infection
- One in five (22%) reported unexplained respiratory symptoms.
6 Ways To Reduce Pollen Exposure:
- Monitor the pollen calendar at: https://www.metoffice.gov.uk/.
- Close windows at night (when pollen "falls out").
- Air your bedding, shake it out of the window.
- Shake clothes outside, don't leave them near your bed and wash your hair every day, especially before you go to sleep... otherwise you can breathe pollen in all night.
- Wash your nose at least twice a day with an isotonic solution. Try New Respiratory Nasal Hygiene Hydrating Spray.
- And use essential oils to treat your allergic rhinitis. Learn more in our founder Isabelle's book: "48 Essential Oils which every home needs to be healthy".
Discover more tips to fight allergies:
The allergic rhinitis routine
How to limit the risks of pet allergies naturally?