During the past couple of years I’ve developed a rather bad case of hayfever. Bad in the sense of: your sinuses get blocked, your airways get infected to the point where you develop asthma and when it gets really bad you actually get physically sick. Other than that it’s the usual symptoms: sneezing, dry & itching eyes, occasional headaches, feeling tired, coughing, and sometimes nosebleeds.
I can control most of these symptoms by using meds, but it is far from an ideal situation. Especially because I tend to have a very late reaction to the pollen, so that I show symptoms of hayfever year round, despite being allergic to just tree pollen. The effect it has on me is not too bad, it’s manageable. The only thing that bothers me most is that it heavily affects my ability to do sports, climb staircases or ride my bike.
After suffering from a sinus infection last year, which was caused by hayfever, and visiting many doctors, I finally ended up at the right address. Many tests and lots of conversations later, it was decided that I should start immunotherapy. This should make me immune to the pollen over time.
There are several types of immunotherapy to treat hayfever. You can take drops of a solution under you tongue, or you can get shots. I’m going for the shots, because those have the highest success rate. So, for the next 3 – 5 years I will be injected with pollen on a regular basis and it should make my shortness of breath go away and my hayfever to be reduced to a much more manageable situation. My hayfever could even disappear completely!
Until that time though, I still have to go through the ‘installation phase’. This means that I now get weekly shots to build up the amount of pollen in the shots. Today, I had my third one and every week the amount of pollen is intensified and the amount of fluid becomes more as well.
So far so good. Things have been going well and I will use this space to give some updates about how I’m doing: whether the shots are affecting me, and whether it actually works. The latter I won’t know until next year, because it takes about a year until you notice a difference. So until then I will still be taking my daily cocktail of pills, sprays, drops and asthma meds.