Monday, 23 June 2008

Grass Allergies

Many people suffer from what is commonly referred to as "Hay fever", essentially an illness caused by an allergic reaction to pollen being breathed in or getting into the eyes. Tracking down the type of pollen that a person is allergic to can be difficult but if you can identify the time of year and the circumstances in which your hay fever is triggered, then you have a good chance of discovering what you have to avoid.

For example:
  • Early Spring is the time for tree pollens (eg. oak, ash, silver birch)

  • May to August is the time for grass pollens (eg. meadow grass, cocksfoot, rye)

  • Late summer into early autumn is the time for weed pollen (eg. dock, nettle, mugwort)
Based on the above guidelines (courtesy of the BBC's Summer Hay Fever page), if someone starts with hay fever in May, June, July or August and spends a lot of time in the garden or near open grassed areas then there's every chance that they have some type of grass allergy. As the BBC page suggests, their best means of reducing symptoms (other than medication) is to avoid grassed areas, get someone else to mow the lawn and never lie down on freshly cut grass.

However, they omitted one other option - have an artificial lawn installed - they'll never have to cut the grass again! In Britain we always like to think it will be a good summer with balmy evenings where you can sit outside, enjoy the fresh air, a beautiful sunset and perhaps drinks with friends and family or even a bbq. With artificial grass in your garden, anyone with a grass allergy should be more than happy to come to the party!