Hay fever is an allergy to pollen, the most common kind of pollen to cause an allergy is that released by long grass, but any pollen could be causing your hay fever. Everyone who has hay fever gets slightly different symptoms and at slightly different times in the summer. The symptoms are usually a combination of itchy eyes, itchy or runny noses, and tickly throats.
The main treatments for hay fever are
1. Nose sprays containing steroids: these are best used every day and take several weeks for their maximum effect kick in. they are very good for runny noses but also have a slight effect on itchy eyes.
2. Anti allergy eye drops: these only work on itchy eyes and have no effect on your nose.
3. Antihistamine tablets: these can help all the symptoms of hay fever.
If your hay fever is particularly bad you may well need all three of these treatments.
None of the treatments are perfect and it is unlikely that any of them will provide you with a completely relief from your symptoms. There are a few key tips to making sure you have a good summer and they are as follows.
- try to avoid pollen where at all possible (on days with high pollen counts if you sit in a grassy field you will get hay fever even if you’re on all the medication)
- Antihistamine tablets and nose sprays work best if you start them one week before your symptoms normally occur. So remember when you normally start with symptoms and make a note on your diary for next year. If you are already dreadful this year then all the medication will have a limited effect.
- Continue taking your medication through the time of the year when you’re normally bad even if you’re symptoms are well controlled.
If you have had hay fever treatments from your doctor before, we can provide them on repeat prescription for you. So please see / phone the repeat prescriptions clerks.
Warts & Verrucas
Warts are usually harmless, but may be unsightly. Warts on the feet are called verruca’s and are sometimes painful. Warts and verruca’s usually clear in time without treatment. If required, they can often be cleared more quickly with treatment. For example, by applying salicylic acid, or by freezing with liquid nitrogen or a cold spray, or by covering with tape.
For further informaion about Warts & Verrucas, please click here.
The ear produces wax to catch dust and act as a natural antiseptic. Wax therefore should only need removing if it becomes impacted and reduces hearing. As syringing ears very occasionally causes significant problems, we want to reduce the amount of syringing that we are doing. You will find that using olive oil ears 4 times/day for 3 weeks will often resolve the problem. You put 2 or 3 drops of ordinary olive oil down the ear 4 times a day for 3 weeks. This softens the wax so that it then runs out of its own accord.
Lie on your side with problem ear upper-most. Try and pull the outer part back and up, if you can (this straightens the canal inside). If able, stay in this position for few minutes after. It can be easier to get some one else to do this for you. If you wish to warm the drops, place the bottle in a cup of hot water (do not heat directly). Occasionally your hearing worsens after the drops go in, as the oil gets behind the wax. This will settle, so continue the treatment as planned.
Oil does not harm the ear. You can continue for any length of time, but 3 weeks is usually enough. Surprisingly, you will not necessarily see wax come out. It often seems to come out unnoticed. If, after 3 weeks or more, you are still deaf from wax, you will need to make an appointment with the nurse to decide what should be done.
If you know you have a wax problem causing deafness and that your ear is healthy you can start the treatment for yourself. We recommend olive oil only.
If you are deaf and you don’t know why, you should see a doctor or a nurse. If we find it is wax causing it, we will advise the olive oil treatment for a minimum of three weeks.
We know that you may be disappointed in this treatment if you have been used to syringing. But ear syringing can lead to ear infections, perforated ear drum and tinitus (persistent noise). We must provide effective and safe treatment, and we feel sure that you will agree.
If you have a build up of wax repeatedly, you can keep it free by putting olive oil down twice a week. An alternative softener for treatment or prevention is sodium bicarbonate 5% ear drops. These can be obtained from a chemist.
Sore throat (pharyngitis) is very common. Soreness in the throat may be the only symptom. You may also have a hoarse voice, mild cough, fever, headache, feel sick, feel tired, and the glands in your neck may swell. It may be painful to swallow. Symptoms typically get worse over 2-3 days and then gradually go, usually within a week. You may also develop a sore throat if you have a cold or flu-like illness.
For futher information about Pharyngitis, please click here.
Traditionally treatment for conjunctivitis has relied on anti-biotic drops or ointment. Scientific studies have been done which show that the apparent effectiveness of antibiotic treatment is due to the condition spontaneously subsiding either because it is due a virus or when the body itself overcomes the infection.
We therefore now suggest that you should wait before starting treatment – you may find that the problem resolves without active treatment.
- Bathe the affected eye(s) if sore or discharging with plenty of fresh cool water applied with cotton wool – use separate cotton wool and water for each eye to prevent spreading the infection from one eye to the other
- Discard the used water and cotton wool to prevent further infection
- Wash your hands frequently to stop spreading the infection, use own towels
- If after 2-3 days, the infection has not resolved or is getting worse, then take the prescription we have given you to the chemist and use it as prescribed.
For further information about Conjunctivitis, please click here.