Wet weather could increase pollen count in hay fever season

There has been a number of news stories in the press about the impact the recent wet weather could have on the pollen count later in the year. In the Telegraph, Patrick Sachon, Met Office Health Business Manager, said: ‘The wet weather is definitely helping the grass grow so if we have dry weather in May and June it would mean a high grass pollen count, and grass pollen affects 95 per cent of sufferers.”

The Daily Mail reported:

Trees need a cold snap before they come out of winter dormancy, and the sudden chill in February, followed by a warm March, gave the perfect kick-start to their growing season.

What’s more, birch trees tend to have high and low alternating pollen years. Last year saw relatively low birch pollen counts from the trees’ catkins, so this year’s counts were expected to be high. The suffering could have been even worse but for the torrential rain.

Professor Jean Emberlin, a scientific consultant to Allergy UK, says: ‘We have had a run of very high pollen counts in a lot of areas, which has made it a bad season for some people.

‘Rain washes the pollen out of the air so people aren’t exposed to it. But if you get a day without rain, and if it’s windy, the pollen will disperse from the trees.’

The Met Office pollen forecast is now available, you can check the forecast in your local area and record your symptoms on the Benadryl social pollen count application. Our new pollen in the UK infographic can help identify when to expect the peak periods for each type of pollen and where in the UK has the highest pollen count.

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