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The worst of hay fever is 'yet to come' warn forecasters as pollen counts reach highest level in a decade; Some sufferers may find conditions "unbearable".

Byline: Isabel Dobinson

Tissues at the ready - pollen counts are about to reach record highs in the UK.

The "worst is still yet to come" say forecasters who have warned hay fever sufferers to prepare for a very sneezy summer.

In fact, conditions may be "unbearable" for some people as pollen counts could reach the highest levels in more than a decade.

Up to 95% of Brits suffer from hay fever but such high levels could trigger reactions in people who have not previously suffered from the allergy, warns the Met Office.

Surrey's Latest Weather Headlines

Grass pollen levels are predicted to reach record levels, exceeding existing counts across the country over the last 10 years.

This is partly due to the recent bout of high temperatures and rainstorms, reportsthe Weather Company.

The Met Office predicts dry weather throughout this week which could lift pollen from grass, plants and trees to cause the pollen count to rise to the highest levels since 2006.

Pollen counts have reportedly reached their highest levels so far this year with many areas - including the south east facing "very high" levels.

The predictions come after sweltering heat, outbreaks of rain and thunderstorms in May and early June created the ideal conditions for high pollen production, forecasters say.

According toMirror Online, a survey of 2,000 hay fever sufferers by the Met Office revealed that 41 per cent suffer so badly that it ruins their whole summer.

More than 100 different species of grass reside in the UK, meaning more sneezing, watery eyes and runny noses likely for many across the country.

Around 18 million people are affected by hay fever in Britain, but according to experts even those who have never suffered with hay fever before may experience symptoms this summer.

Hay fever is a common allergic reaction, that occurs as a reaction to pollen from grass, trees and weeds during spring and summer. It can affect both adults and children.

Symptoms include red, itchy and watery eyes, continuous sneezing, a runny or blocked nose and an itchy throat, nose or mouth.

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Some sufferers may also experience facial pain, blocked sinuses, headaches, earache and tiredness.

Symptoms tend to flare up when the body mistakes tree pollen or pollen from shrubs as dangerous organisms, forcing the immune system to go into action by sending out antibodies to try to prevent it spreading.

Grass pollen is the most common allergen and affects sufferers between May and July.

Tree pollen, which is common from February to June, and weed pollen (June to September) can also cause hay fever.

Hayfever sufferers' woe as 'very high' pollen count lingers for the south east

Yolanda Clewlow, manager of the UK pollen network at the Met Office, said: "We know how seriously hay fever can impact people's lives in the UK, particularly as a result of grass pollen.

"This has led to our involvement in a dedicated research programme to identify the most significant of the 150 different species of grass pollen in the UK.

"We aim to help inform hay fever and asthma sufferers and empower them in managing their symptoms more effectively.

"We urge anyone that suffers from hay fever and asthma to check our pollen forecast or to download our simple-to-use mobile app to receive notifications when pollen levels are at their highest."

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Publication:Get Surrey (Surrey, England)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Jun 18, 2018
Words:577
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