Alice turns into an alien for a hay fever cure

Anxious to avoid the use of drugs for her children, Lizzie turns to a non-invasive treatment for her daughter’s hay fever, learning from the experience of her mother-in-law – and Grandad Ron gives it a try as well…

Arms outstretched, hands extended like claws, and nostrils glowing red, five-year-old Alice advanced on her grandad Ron in her best alien impersonation.

Grandad joined in the fun by recoiling in mock horror, and Alice burst into fits of giggles.

“Why is your nose glowing red, and what are those wires hanging out of it,” the older man wanted to know, not unreasonably.

“Hay fever,” interrupted his daughter-in-law Lizzie. “We think Alice suffers from it, just as I did when I was little, and we wanted to help her with it.”

“To be honest, that’s not much of an explanation for my granddaughter to be running about with electric lights up her nose. How does that cure hay fever?”

Ollie’s experience
Lizzie reminded his father of son Ollie’s experiences as a youngster; unable to play outdoors in the summer without incessant sneezing from his streaming nose, squinting at the world through eyes red-rimmed through rubbing, and red-blotched skin. It hadn’t been fun. “And you know how keen his mum is to avoid using drugs,” she said. “She found this little device in the pharmacy. I’m not sure how it works, or why, but it’s non-invasive, doesn’t involve drugs, and it really worked for me. We’re hoping it’ll do the same for Alice,” he added.

Grandad Ron picked up the device, now discarded by Alice, who was in the garden with her dad. With a wet wipe wiped over the tiny light bulbs that had been in Alice’s nose, and inserted them into his own, pressing the button on the box connected to them by two wires. The tiny control panel buzzed, and the button glowed blue. “I can see why she enjoys it,” said Ron, his voice sounding a little odd. He looked at himself in the mirror and smiled.

“Hay fever spoils the summer for thousands of people. Millions, even,” said Lizzie.

To many tablets
“We’re too ready to take tablets for all kinds of ills, and I’d rather avoid it for the children if I can. But at the same time, it’s important that they get outside in the fresh air and get plenty of exercise. It’s no fun for her if she’s sneezing all the time. What’s more, it means the rest of us can’t enjoy the summer either, because we can’t go out either,” she added.

“Ollie and I were talking about it the other day; it’s estimated that half of the population could be allergic to something or other, including the pollen that causes hay fever,” she said.

Ron, his nose still glowing red from his hay fever treatment, thought for a moment. “You know, you’re right,” he said. “When I was a child no-one was allergic to nuts, but now we hear about it almost daily, and all sorts of foods carry warnings about them. And bee stings. They can be killers too,” he added.

“But it’s more than sneezing,” said Lizzie. “According to studies, people with hay fever don’t sleep well – and that can affect four in five children – so they’re tired and sleepy during the daytime, and don’t learn so well. It’s a worry, and I want to control it for Alice’s sake. Now take that thing out of your nose, and put it away. Fresh air’s good for you too, and you’re better off outside playing with the grandchildren. That’s a hay fever cure you’ve got there, not a computer game,” she added.