Hay fever medication shortage could affect thousands in Ireland 1 week ago

Hay fever medication shortage could affect thousands in Ireland

A national shortage of hay fever medication could see thousands of people in Ireland affected by the condition this summer at the height of the season.

Almost a third of the population suffers from hay fever, with the majority of those seeking treatments for the seasonal allergic reaction such as eye drops, nasal sprays and antihistamines.

Many pharmacies will not be able to keep up with the demand for antihistamine products over the next few weeks due to a nationwide shortage of the most commonly used treatments.

Hay fever is an allergic reaction to pollen in the air, causing a runny nose and eyes, sleepless nights, headaches and sneezing.

Typically, over-the-counter products are used to treat hay fever but according to the latest Medicine Shortages Index, there are currently 241 medicines now out of stock in Ireland, a 36% increase since May last year. This includes hay fever treatments.

Child sneezing into a tissue Credit: Getty

There are 11 eye drop brands that are used to treat hay fever now affected by the shortage as well as five nasal sprays, including Mometasone and Otrivine.

This shortage is expected to impact thousands of people in Ireland who suffer from hay fever as the pollen count in the air is on the rise.

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Hay fever is an allergic reaction to pollen, usually when it comes into contact with your mouth, nose, eyes and throat. Hay fever is usually worse between late March and September, especially when it's warm, humid and windy, according to the HSE.

Symptoms of hay fever include:

    • sneezing and coughing
    • a runny or blocked nose
    • itchy, red or watery eyes
    • itchy throat, mouth, nose and ears
    • loss of smell
    • pain around your temples and forehead
    • headache
    • earache
    • feeling tired

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