Around 20% of the British population is affected by hay fever. Basically it is an allergy to pollen which is released from plants into the air from March until early September.
Hay fever in babies and children under five is rare, but not unheard of.
Baby health is a priority so it's hard to see your child struggling to cope with hay fever symptoms which can include a runny nose and itchy sore, red or watery eyes.
The Symptoms tend to be more severe early in the mornings and in the early evening.
Despite its name, there is no actual fever associated with hay fever so if your baby has a fever she is more likely to be suffering from a cold.
How to cope with hay fever in babies
The daily pollen count is available online and on TV weather bulletins so take notice and keep your baby inside if the count is high or if it's a windy day (which would stir up the pollen more). If you do go out on a high pollen count day choose seaside trips or visits into town rather than green places, like parks, where there will be more pollen.
Try not to open the windows and use fans or air conditioning to keep cool. The same goes for in your car.
If your baby goes outside make sure you wash her hair, face and hands and change her clothes when she comes back indoors to clear away any pollen caught on the fabrics or her skin.
During summer months dry your baby's clothes in a tumble dryer or on an indoors rack as leaving her clothes to dry outdoors will result in pollen sticking to the fibres.
Toddlers can wear a pair of wrap-around sunglasses which will prevent some pollen getting in her eyes.
Use an air-conditioner or fan in the home and car rather than opening the windows
Mums of babies with hay fever find smearing a tiny amount of petroleum jelly around the inside of baby's nose helps capture pollen and stop it being breathed in.
Remember to wash your pets regularly too as they can bring in pollen on their fur. Or wipe them down with a damp towel to catch loose pollen.
Treating hay fever in babies
o Wipe her eyes with cotton wool and cool water to soothe the symptoms
o While specially formulated hay fever treatments can give relief from some symptoms they should only be given to children above one year old.
o Your GP may recommend antihistamines which can be given to children over one year and are sometimes given in small doses to babies. But always consult your GP on a medicine's suitability for your baby.
o GP's sometimes prescribe a steroid nasal spray in severe cases of hay fever in babies.