While most Australians look forward to getting outdoors for fresh air and sunshine; people who have hayfever step outside with a fear of watery eyes, itchy throats and runny noses.If worn correctly masks may reduce exposure to airborne allergens and reduce symptoms.
How does a mask help hayfever?
Hayfever triggers include pollen (from grasses and plant spores), mould, dust mites and animal hair. These particles travel through the air and enter the body via the airways, eyes and skin, causing an allergic reaction in some people.
Wearing a medical or cotton face mask creates a physical barrier between the outside environment and your nose and mouth. This barrier reduces your exposure to allergens, and may reduce the chances of having a reaction to hayfever triggers such as pollen, dust and pollution.
Why wear a mask for hayfever?
There are several reasons why people who have allergies are choosing to wear masks for hayfever:
- While there are some very effective remedies for managing hayfever, many people don’t want to take medicine or carry health products with them every time they leave home.
- If the pollen count is extreme, or it’s a hot windy day, a face mask offers physical protection for the time they are exposed to pollen, when it’s needed most.
- Wearing a mask prevents the unintentional spread of germs that come with hay fever symptoms, such as sneezing and coughing.
Do I have to wear a mask for hayfever?
Wearing a mask or face covering when leaving the home is now recommended or required in some parts of Australia, to help protect yourself and others from community transmission of COVID-19.
You can find this information from your state health authority, including information about people who may be exempt from wearing a mask due to medical reasons.
Where can I get a mask for allergies?
Disposable and reusable masks are now widely available at pharmacies, convenience stores, supermarkets and online.
Reusable mask covers should be washed after each use to maximise their efficiency and reduce your exposure to allergens acquired on the surface after removal. Remember to swap out the filter in your reusable mask after each use.
All content and advice are provided on behalf of Sensitive Choice, an initiative of the National Asthma Council Australia, in partnership with Kleenex®. The advice provided in this material is general in nature and is not intended as medical advice. If you need medical advice, please consult your health care professional.
Kleenex® Allergy ComfortTM Tissues are free from lotion, dye & fragrance, and are dermatologically tested with reduced linting for hay fever and allergy sufferers. Grab a box today from Woolworths, Coles, Amazon or your local IGA Store