Spring and summer will forever be the most popular seasons to get married. The days are longer, the temperatures are warmer and there is more chance of sunny weather from April to September. However, these are the months when the pollen count is at its highest and hay fever sufferers will endure the worst effects.  

With one in four of us falling victim to hay fever, it is more important than ever that we are aware of the symptoms and how this can affect our general wellbeing. Symptoms include a runny or stuffy nose, nasal congestion, a scratchy throat, watery or itchy eyes and sometimes, wheeziness. Altogether, this can lead to feelings of misery and frustration. 

While most hay fever sufferers will be able to manage their symptoms to a degree, there may be remedies and solutions that you hadn't considered. Take a look at these suggestions in how to manage hay fever on your wedding day and keep your symptoms at bay.  

Limit your time outdoors  

While spring and summer weddings are usually preferred because of the ability to celebrate in the great outdoors, this can play havoc with hay fever. Check the pollen count before your special day to ensure you are as prepared as can be. 

With the potential pitfalls of not feeling at your best and watery eyes ruining your make-up, plan to spend more time indoors on your wedding day or offer guests the option of being indoors or outdoors during the quieter interludes of the day. 

Venues with an orangery or summerhouse may also be a consideration for hay fever sufferers, allowing you to enjoy the outdoors while remaining inside. Also remember to keep windows and doors shut as much as is possible without overheating. 

Find remedies that work for you 

If you do want to brave the outdoors, ensure you pre-empt symptoms with the most effective remedies for you. Always consult a doctor or pharmacist before taking new medication, and check the possible side-effects such as drowsiness, which is the last thing you want to feel on your big day. Start trialling any new medication a few months before your wedding to measure its efficacy.  

Nasal sprays, antihistamines and eye drops are good go-tos and can be bought over-the-counter. Alternatively, consider an organic, drug-free allergen barrier balm, which can be applied beneath your eyes and around your nostrils, under or over your make-up, working to trap pollen and other allergens before they enter your eyes or airways. 

Try immunotherapy 

If over-the-counter remedies aren't working for you, book an appointment with your GP to discuss steroid treatment or immunotherapy. Immunotherapy works by injecting small amounts of pollen into your blood stream to build up a natural resistance; the treatment can also be administered as a tablet.  

However, if you qualify for immunotherapy, treatment usually begins in the winter, three months before the hay fever season, so this will have to be factored in to your wedding planning. Visit nhs.uk for more information. 

Limit alcohol consumption 

Studies have found that alcohol can cause or worsen hay fever symptoms due to its histamine content, with red wine and white wine named as the worst offenders. As such, it's better to opt for low to 0% alcohol options, or consider a dry wedding.  

Stay hydrated with plenty of water, virgin cocktails or thirst-quenching summer drinks such as lemonade and elderflower cordial. Not only will you be far more focused on your day to take in all those precious moments, but you won't have a hangover to face the morning after. 

Keep calm 

Finally, remain calm and collected throughout the day. Although easier said than done, especially on your wedding day, anxiety will only exacerbate hay fever symptoms and make you feel worse. Sometimes this is a vicious cycle, as once you start feeling symptoms take hold, you may panic and send your senses into overdrive.  

Use essential oils and take breaks away from your guests to re-energise. Deep breathing exercises can also help you to centre yourself and take control over your body. Mindfulness apps may also be useful to consider before the big day – arming you with the tools and resources to restore calm in moments of stress.