Home Lifestyle When does hay fever season start in the UK?

When does hay fever season start in the UK?


It’s the least wonderful time of the year (Picture: Getty)

Spring has very nearly sprung, and hay fever season is speedily on its way – with experts warning of a slightly terrifying sounding ‘pollen bomb’ headed our way.

For the hay fever sufferers among us, the months ahead are likely to be plagued by endless sneezing and awfully itchy eyes.

According to Allergy UK, between 10% and 30% of adults suffer from hay fever, along with 40% of children.

Here is everything you need to know about hay fever season before you head outside, what symptoms you can expect to get, and the best treatments available.

When does hay fever season start?

The time of year that your hay fever will be most prominent can vary depending on which types of pollen you are most allergic to.

There is a large variety of pollen types for different plants and trees including ash, birch, pine, and nettles.

Nettles can cause a hay fever flare up. (Picture: Getty)

Each year, the timings of high pollen can vary depending on the weather, and the pollen count is at its highest during warm and windy weather.

Symptoms are often at their worst for the six months between April and September, but the time frame can vary between each person.

The most common groups of pollen that cause hay fever are trees, grass and weeds.

Tree pollen usually peaks the earlier in the year. Its pollen count is often highest from March until May, though can stay prominent throughout June, July and August.

Grass pollen doesn’t normally kick off until March or April, but it doesn’t reach its peak until around June or July.

A sneezy few months ahead (Picture: Getty Images)

It then starts to decline slightly in August, and is usually quite mild by time September rolls around.

Weeds, meanwhile, usually start producing pollen in June or July, peaking around August or September. Sometimes, it can remain prominent in October.

What are hay fever symptoms?

Some of the main symptoms of hay fever can include sneezing and a runny, blocked nose.

Some hay fever sufferers can also experience itchy, red eyes, couching, and loss of smell.

Pollen allergies can also lead to headaches, earaches, and make you feel more tired than usual.

Hay fever medication might be able to help ease symptoms. Speak to your pharmacist or GP (Picture: Getty)

Sadly, there isn’t a cure for hay fever, but there is some medication that you can get from a pharmacy to help treat and reduce your symptoms.

Options include antihistamine tablets, eye drops, and nose sprays. Speak to your GP or pharmacist to find out the best treatments, if you’ve yet to get a grip on your symptoms.

Another regularly-shared piece of advice is for hay fever sufferers to wear wraparound sunglasses, to stop pollen getting into their eyes.

Vaseline around your nostrils can also help to stop pollen from getting into your nose.

Shower and changing your clothes when you get in from outside, too, as this can help remove pollen from your hair and body, hopefully helping to reduce symptoms while at home.

What is the pollen count in London?

If you’re in the capital and feel limited by your hay fever, health website A. Vogel publishes a five-day pollen count forecast.

This site gives you a five-day forecast, for all different kinds of pollen (Picture: A. Vogel)

Above is an example of what the pollen count forecast will look like, but you’ll have to visit it for the most up-to-date stats.

Helpfully, the chart can be tailored to a specific area of London – so whether you’re heading to Clissold Park or Peckham Rye, you should be able to work out if you’ll have a flare-up.

The site also breaks down the count of individual plants, if you know exactly what type of pollen you’re allergic to.

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