26 Allergy awareness week (26-30)
The weather is dry, warm and sunny (well, it was), but not everyone can enjoy being out in it. For some, such weather comes with sneezes, runny noses and itchy eyes – hay fever. Pollen (which doesn’t just come from newly mown grass) is one of the triggers that can cause immune systems to overact and cause an allergy. Other triggers include dust, animal fur, certain types of foods (nuts, dairy products, seafood), insect bites/stings and certain medicines. In some cases there can be wheezing, rash and other symptoms. Usually anti-histamine and keeping away from the trigger is sufficient to keep it under control. In other cases, where there is anaphylactic reaction medical help may be needed. Is allergy more common than it used to be, or are we just more aware of it? This week is a reminder to us of the existence of allergies, of friends, family members and acquaintances who suffer from them, and maybe a reminder to us too to think ahead – if we meet in the garden, will they sneeze; as and when we can meet indoors, will the cat make them wheeze; and when we can eventually have people round for a meal, should we check if there is anything to avoid cooking as it might bring them out in a rash. Visit the NHS website for more information about allergy and anaphylaxis
Lord, having allergies can be annoying, living with someone with allergies can be challenging. Help us to be aware and sensitive to them. We give thanks for all the work that has been done in understanding the causes, and the medicines developed to treat their symptoms, particularly anaphylaxis
PS our trip North and West takes us to Mallaig this week
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