Hay fever and mowing the grass – Some solutions

Do you have symptoms of hay fever when mowing the lawn?

If in doubt, an allergy to grass pollen (and others) can cause one or more of the following conditions:

  • red, sore and runny eyes

  • stuffy nose and / or sneezing

  • rashes and spots plus a general “itch”

  • a blocked throat full of phlegm

  • an acute cough possibly associated with wheezing

  • sinus headache

  • a general feeling of being unwell.

Obviously, if you suffer from these symptoms, it would always make sense to ask a doctor to check your hypotheses about hay fever as a cause. Assuming it is, what can you do about it?

Don’t ignore it

Hay fever was once mocked by many, including some health professionals, as a trivial or “in the mind” thing.

In today’s most enlightened times, it is recognized to be a potentially serious problem that can seriously reduce the effectiveness of the sick at work or when doing housework.

There are some medications you can take to help and your doctor will discuss this with you, including traditional antihistamines, although other treatments are also possible. They may also advise you to do some tests to specifically test and identify which type of pollen or dust you are allergic to.


In some cases, those who work with agricultural machinery and lawnmowers may want to consider some additional tips that may help.

  • Depending on your specific allergy, look for which times of the day offer the best working conditions. Some pollens are much more active in the early morning and others in the late evening, etc. Avoid those times!

  • If your main effects are related to breathing and throat, consider using a mask. Make sure it is classified for pollen removal.

  • If you are primarily interested in the eyes, think of the glasses but you will need special varieties that do not have unfiltered ventilation holes or you will waste time.

  • Consider using the suit and ‘cover yourself’ if the worst effects are related to the skin. There are also some barrier creams that can be effective.

  • Remember that some allergies commonly called “hay fever” have nothing to do with pollen. Your allergies may be due, for example, to dust collection or simply to the dust raised when driving around the ground. Another culprit is often household dust, the largest component of which is usually dead skin cells! If you are really allergic to dust collection and related problems, then you need to take some of the previous steps or even look at working in a vehicle with a cabin that provides filtered air.

  • When you are done cutting, be sure to undress outside the house and try to take a quick shower once inside. It is useless to keep a lot of pollen on overalls and to disguise yourself if you then take it to your house at the end of the day, shaking it while you move!

Most employers are sympathetic to employees who suffer from hay fever, so if you need something to help you get through the day and perform properly, let them know.

If it is a personal issue rather than a work one, then you could simply ask your spouse, children or a willing neighbor to help out in the peak allergy season!

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