NOS The nasal spray against hay fever Fluticasone is a popular prescription
NOS Nieuws•vandaag, 12:32
Jiske van Haga
Jiske van Haga
Everyone knows someone with hay fever. Where one sneezes the whole neighborhood together, the other sniffles all day long. Some suffer so much that working or studying is no longer an option.
A few weeks ago, experts warned of a pollen explosion due to the combination of the wet and warm spring and the drought of the last few weeks. Primary school teacher Lisette ter Beest knew this. “It’s really intense these weeks. Normally I already have medication from the GP, but now I’ve even been given a puffer against the complaints.”
It got so bad this week that Ter Beest had to stop work halfway through the day for the first time. “Because of all that coughing, I lost my voice and had to go home. I’ve never had that. It’s really in my airways, so I have to sneeze a lot, cough a lot, and my eyes, my throat itch and palate.”
Hay fever is spreading
With mild complaints you can function well with medicines from the drugstore or an extra remedy from the doctor. But some suffer so much that they have to see a specialist in the hospital. “It’s not called hay fever for nothing: if it really makes you sick, it can feel like you have the flu,” says pediatrician and allergist at Deventer Hospital Monique Gorissen in the radio program Nieuws en Co.
Although hay fever normally only develops at a later age, the doctor sees that the complaints occur at an increasingly younger age. The group with extreme complaints is also increasing, she says.
Ter Beest is by no means the only one who suffers so much from hay fever this year. “I hear from several people: ‘I never take medication and now I suddenly need medication to suppress it.’ Or that people do not open their windows and doors in the house, for fear of the pollen.”
A call from the NOS on Instagram about extreme complaints due to hay fever released a lot. Hundreds of, sometimes very desperate, responses poured in. “I have almost constant headaches, take three types of medication, and have developed asthma,” writes Jet.
Some have called in sick at work, or are tired from the bad nights. “All those complaints cost a lot of energy and I notice that I am exhausted,” writes Aukje. “Yet you don’t want to make a fuss, because people often think: ‘It’s just hay fever’. But it’s not nothing!”
For Ruben, his work at customer service now consists mainly of answering emails. “I’m just sniffling and sneezing while calling.” And with Vincent, the medication is not working. He therefore opts for a different solution: “I’m going to do another rain dance in a bit,” he jokes.
According to allergist Gorissen, we are not yet rid of those intense hay fever seasons. “Of course we never know exactly, but it is expected that there will be less precipitation here in the summer and that it will be warmer. Those two things together make it very dusty,” says the doctor. Bad news for hay fever sufferers.
But there is also good news for the short term: Vincent’s rain dance has helped. From tomorrow there will be a local shower here and there and some rain will also fall occasionally in the coming days. That rain ensures clean air and reduces the number of pollen: a bit of relief for all those hay fever sufferers in the Netherlands.
In any case, Ter Beest can’t wait for the first drops to fall: “It’s such a cliché, because when it’s hot, we complain about the heat. When it’s cold, we complain that it should be warmer. But a little A little rain would be nice now, not only for me, but also for nature.”