Hayfever can cause symptoms such as dry, itchy or runny eyes, sneezing, stuffed up or runny nose, and sinus problems. It can cause itchy skin too. These do sound a bit like menopause symptoms and I’ve talked about many of them before.
Can menopause cause hayfever?
The answer is yes. And no. Let me explain. We know that when we go through menopause, hormonal changes can put a huge stress on our body. It can affect the nervous system, which we’re all too familiar with, not to mention digestion. I was talking about that only last week. These changes can affect our sleep too, so in addition to hot flashes, night sweats, restless legs and the fact that estrogen on its own is enough to disrupt our whole sleep pattern, we also experience a lot of fatigue.
What do all these things add up to?
We know that ongoing stress can affect the immune system. It can affect digestion too, keeping nutrients from being absorbed properly. If we’re not careful about what we eat, poor nutrition can weaken the immune system too; we need to eat even better during menopause just to keep our body going.
Sleep and fatigue
As I mentioned before, sleep is a big issue and research has shown that a chronic lack of sleep can weaken our immune system. If left unchecked, fatigue can grind us down, which can further weaken the immune system. So having a weakened immune system during menopause can make you prone to things like hayfever, which is why a lot of women get hayfever during menopause. It’s not menopause itself that’s causing hayfever, but the fact that all these symptoms combined are wreaking havoc on your body’s defences.
Colds and the flu
Some women find that they become more prone to catching colds and the flu, while others get things like allergic rhinitis year round or become far more sensitive to smoke, perfume and paint. You can even become sensitive to certain kinds of clothing. Now that I’m going through menopause, I suddenly love wool sweaters, which is strange because I used to find them incredibly itchy and just couldn’t bear to wear them.
What you can do to help
So, what can you do to avoid getting these allergies or to give your immune system a little boost? As usual, the most important thing is diet: it needs to be healthy and varied and provide you with lots of nutrients that your body will absolutely love.
Remember water. Dehydration makes us much more susceptible to itchy skin, allergies and rashes. So drinking plenty of water is really, really important.
Get plenty of rest and relaxation. Menopause puts an awful lot of strain on the body, and we need that rest in order to recuperate and re-energize. All these things and anything else you do that’s really positive will have the right effect on your immune system. For an extra little leg-up, A.Vogel Deep Sleep might help you get a good night’s rest, which will help keep your immune system healthy.
Natural remedies can also help with hayfever and allergies. We make something called A.Vogel Allergy Relief Tablets and spray. They’re great because there are no contraindications with other medication, they won’t make you drowsy, and you can take them in combination with HRT and oral contraceptives as well.
If you tend to have itchy skin or rashes, consider taking stinging nettle supplements or having a couple of cups of nettle tea every day. And vitamin C is great too: if you’re looking for a natural antihistamine, vitamin C taken often and in small doses can be really, really effective.