Hay fever

David Fremlin

Having got through an English June without antihistamines for the first time in thirty-five years, I offer my method to other sufferers, hoping it will be useful. I use cotton buds to dab petroleum jelly ("Vaseline") liberally on the sensitive areas at the top of my nostrils. This is not a panacea -- it corresponds to a rather feeble pill, so I still have to stay indoors as much as possible. But as it seems to have no side-effects except to remove my sense of smell, there is no bar to repeating every two hours throughout the day; and a basic regime of morning and evening treatments, together with a dose before and after cycling to or from work, or mowing the lawn, has kept things under control nearly all the time. My own hay fever is relatively mild; more severely affected people might want to combine this treatment with drugs. Tell me if it helps.

Note added 6 July 01: the method worked this year too. With the aid of one cheap pill I even managed a garden party.