This week saw the unveiling of King Charles' impressive 20-foot Christmas tree at Windsor Castle, and while it looks magical, the King's wife, Queen Consort Camilla, is likely unimpressed by the tree.
We're not suggesting Camilla is a scrooge, instead that the humongous tree is sure to spell trouble for her allergies. The 75-year-old is known to have sinusitis, an infection in the sinuses, which is a complication of hay fever – and Christmas trees often trigger hay fever.
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The allergy caused by festive firs is called Christmas tree syndrome and is an allergy to the pollen, dust and mould spores that are present in both real and artificial trees.
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If you think you might suffer from Christmas tree syndrome, there are a few ways to limit the symptoms, while still making the most of the festive season.
"Put your tree up as late as possible to help minimise the risk of exposure to mould," advises airborne allergens expert Max Wiseberg, who works with Haymax.
Queen Consort Camilla is likely to struggle with Christmas tree syndrome
He also advises hosing the tree down before taking it into the house or after getting it out of storage. "This can help remove some of the mould and spores, though it's probably best to get someone who isn't allergic to do this," he says.
Max also advises caution when it comes to decorating the tree – not an issue for Queen Consort Camilla, as this is done for her.
Camilla and Charles did not decorate their own Christmas tree
"Take care when you’re decorating your tree, or get someone else to do it, as allergens will be disturbed as you move the tree into position and move the branches to hang the decorations and position the lights," Max explains.
Camilla and Charles' pooches, Beth and Bluebell, could be pollen spreaders too, so they ought to watch out for that!
"Keep animals clean and well groomed, to reduce allergens from their fur. And keep them out of your bedroom," Max says.
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