The way you dry your clothes could make your hay fever worse, expert warns
Warmer weather is on the way and while for many it’s a welcome sigh of relief, for others it means one thing: hay fever season is approaching.
The Met Office is forecasting high pollen counts across Wales all weekend, and next week won’t be much better with average counts throughout the week. The forecast is high for tree pollen, including ash, oak, plane and birch.
It’s a tough time for hay fever sufferers, and they’re no doubt trying every trick in the book to relieve their symptoms. We’ve previously shared these tips to help manage symptoms – read more here.
READ MORE: Warmer weather may lead to increased hay fever symptoms, survey finds
But according to experts, our daily routines could actually make your symptoms significantly worse, including hanging your laundry outside to dry. Cause an expert warning.
AEG has teamed up with pediatric allergist Professor Adam Fox in advising against drying clothes outside, even though warmer temperatures have been forecast.
Do you have any remedies to help people with hay fever? Share in the comments below.
Professor Adam Fox said: ‘Pollen is very light and easily picked up by warm air, so it rises early in the morning and falls at dusk. For this reason, we should avoid having our washing on the line during these times of the day.
Professor Adam Fox explains below how our washing habits could be making our seasonal allergies worse:
Be careful of open windows when drying clothes indoors
An alternative to drying outdoors is to dry clothes indoors on drying racks, where the warmer air will definitely do a short job of drying your clothes. But be careful with open windows, as they will still allow pollen to enter and settle on your clothes almost as much as if they were hanging outside.
If you suffer from hay fever, it’s best to make sure these windows are closed if you dry your clothes indoors to minimize the transfer of pollen to clean laundry.
Drying clean clothes outdoors makes symptoms worse
Hanging clothes outside in the summer is the more sustainable choice than using clothes dryers for all our wash loads. But during these months there are a few additional things to think about; one of the most crucial being the time of day.
Pollen is very light and easily picked up by warm air, so it rises early in the morning and falls again at dusk. For this reason, we should avoid having our washing on the line during these times of the day. Try hanging clothes out in the middle of the day if possible and tucking them in at dusk. It’s not only the hottest part of the day when our clothes dry the fastest, but also the time of day when there is less pollen lower to the ground.
Where you hang your clothes to dry can also make a difference. The main contributors to pollen are grass and trees, so hanging the wash away from pollen sources can help lessen the effects, but keep in mind that pollen can still travel on the wind. Once the laundry is in place, give your clothesline a good wipe down before hanging new clothes, as this will remove any particles from your line that could transfer to clean clothes.
Take off your clothes before entering the room
You can also consider undressing before entering the bedroom and washing your hair before bed. This means that any pollen particles that might cling to us are not brought into the bed ready to agitate us later. If possible, also avoid leaving windows open throughout the day, as you could invite annoying pollen particles that will later settle on bedding overnight.
Showering and washing your hair more often than usual
We like to move a lot, especially now that we have a little more freedom to do so. But with this we must be aware that we can collect pollen particles wherever we go on our clothes, but also in our hair and skin.
Therefore, you will need to wash all clothes more often during the summer months when the pollen count is highest, but also shower a bit more often than you normally would. This will not only help you cool down, but also get rid of those annoying pollen particles.
Wash pillowcases more often
Our bedding can be another key place where pollen particles can collect, especially since we spend so much time facing the pillowcase. During the summer months it is advisable to wash our bedding more than normal so that when we hop under the covers at the end of the day we are not faced with even more allergens.
See the latest forecast in your area below: