Traditional Chinese medicine has long recognised hay fever and perennial allergic rhinitis. Hay fever is simply a sub-category of allergic rhinitis, in which the allergen is pollen and therefore symptoms are seasonal. In perennial allergic rhinitis, symptoms are present year round, and can be driven by such irritants as house dust or mould spores.
Acupuncture for hay fever is ideally given before the onset of the season, during the preceding autumn and winter. This is the time when we can address the root of the disease. Once the season has commenced, treatment inevitably has to lean more towards the manifestation ie your symptoms. Many people though do not seek out an acupuncturist until the season is underway, but we can still provide relief.
You can continue using antihistamines if you wish. If you need them to a diminishing extent, then that is one indicator of progress.
Perennial Allergic Rhinitis
Turning to perennial allergic rhinitis, then because there is less seasonal variation, we treat the root and manifestation with equal emphasis. I use the expression “less seasonal variation” because some patients will feel worse in autumn with the increase in mould spores. Others might feel better in summer when they can be outdoors, away from house dust or other domestic allergens.
If you would like to explore treatment for either of these conditions, you are welcome to call me. My usual approach is to suggest a fixed number of sessions, after which we stop and review progress. Meanwhile, you will find below the results of some recent research into these conditions. A resource you may find interesting is the University of Worcester’s pollen calendar for southwest England: it might help you pinpoint which species you are reacting to.