20 March 2024, by Emily Proctor

March 20 marks the first official day of spring in the Netherlands, which means tulips, daffodils and the upcoming Easter holidays for many of us. But for some people, spring comes with a sense of dread, because when the flowers and insects arrive, so does one unwanted extra: hay fever. 

Hay fever (hooikoorts) and allergies in the Netherlands

If you’ve been in the Netherlands for a long time, and have suffered from hay fever before, you’ll already be aware of how annoying and unpleasant it can be trying to take in the stunning flowers at the Keukenhof with a runny nose and stinging eyes. But for newbies, especially people who haven’t suffered from hay fever before, it can come as quite a nasty shock. 

But there’s no need to panic – there are plenty of things to help you if you suffer from hay fever in the Netherlands. Firstly, you can check the pollen forecast – in the Netherlands you can do a simple search on the internet for hooikoortsradar and you’ll find plenty of tools that can help you look at the pollen levels outside before you schedule plans outside. 

Allergy and hay fever medication can be purchased at pharmacies

If you’re suffering from hay fever in the Netherlands, there are lots of over-the-counter medications available at your local pharmacy that can help treat your symptoms. Doctors in the Netherlands also recommend keeping the windows of your home closed when the weather is sunny and there are strong winds, so that pollen doesn’t blow into your home. 

If your symptoms persist after trying these strategies, or you are having a severe reaction to either the allergy itself, or any over-the-counter medication you have tried, it’s best to contact a doctor. Doctors in the Netherlands can prescribe a range of helpful medicines and therapies that can treat your allergies.

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