A nationwide survey of over 2000 people found that a quarter of hay fever sufferers felt they were unable to blow their nose properly when in public. However, Dr Adrian Morris, a specialist in allergy and respiratory medicine at Londonâ€™s Royal Brompton Hospital, explains â€śthe only way to remove the irritant is by blowing into a tissue, thereby expelling the substance from your body.â€ť
Over half of respondents to the KleenexÂ® study cited sniffing as a common problem during the hay fever season. The region most likely to sniff is London, particularly the 18-24 year olds in this area. Dr Morrisâ€™s advice on sniffing, however, might make them think twice before deciding not to blow: â€śthe act of sniffing causes the irritant (pollen) to remain in the nasal passages, so the associated symptoms will not be alleviatedâ€ť. Therefore the sniffers among us are only prolonging the suffering, and medical advice is to let it out by having a good nose blow into a tissue.
Tissues proved to be another interesting topic. Despite being cited as the most important item to hay fever sufferers, they were also the most likely to be forgotten, with a third of Londoners forgetting to take tissues with them. Yet remembering tissues could solve many problems experienced by sufferers; while over one in three people felt that sniffing in public might annoy those around them, a quarter felt forced to sniff due to the fact that they didnâ€™t have a tissue to hand. Given that sneezing is the No. 1 hayfever symptom, experienced by 75% of people, itâ€™s even more surprising that people often forget to carry tissues with them.
The KleenexÂ® survey also found that 18-24â€™s are the most considerate when it comes to thinking about how their symptoms might affect other people. Over 50% admitted to being conscious that their sniffing might annoy others, compared with only one in four of the over 55â€™s.
|% suffer from hay fever||% embarrassed by hay fever symptoms||% embarrassed to blow their nose in public||% suffer from sniffing during hay fever season||% forget to carry tissues around when out||% sniff to prevent blowing their nose|
|Rest of South||44||20||20||54||34||27|
|Midlands and Wales||45||25||26||56||37||26|