The severity of the allergic reaction to pollen varies from person to person according to:

  • the immune system of the sensitized person which reacts in different degrees to the allergen
  • the type of pollen to which the person is allergic
  • the intensity of the pollen season.

How can allergies to pollen be prevented?

To prevent and alleviate the symptoms of a pollen allergy, it is first of all necessary to:

  • diagnose the type of pollen that is at the origin of the allergy
  • determine the season corresponding to this pollen by using pollen calendars
  • apply prevention measures during the season involved.

Prevention is based mainly on:

  • avoiding allergens
  • antihistamine and corticosteroid treatment prescribed preventatively by the doctor.

Avoiding allergens

Once the allergen responsible has been identified the unpleasant symptoms can be reduced, particularly by avoiding exposure to the allergen both indoors and out:

  • avoid efforts and activities in the open air
  • aerate the house only briefly when the pollen concentration is highest
  • aerate for longer periods on rainy days when the concentration of pollen is lower
  • keep car windows closed when travelling
  • wear glasses to prevent the allergens getting into your eyes
  • avoid drying clothes outside so that pollen does not get caught in the material being then brought into the house
  • use disposable tissues
  • wash your hair before going to bed to remove pollen and to avoid sleeping in contact with the allergen
  • do not mow lawns or stay near when lawns are being mowed
  • if possible go to the seaside where less tree pollen is present in the air.

On the advice of your doctor, you can draw up a treatment schedule to protect you during the most critical periods.

Antihistamine and corticosteroid treatment

Your doctor may decide to prescribe preventive treatment with antihistamines or corticosteroids.

The Belgian aerobiological surveillance network “Airallergy” quickly informs general practitioners, specialists, pharmaceutical firms and the general population of the presence of allergens in the air.

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