Warm weather spells ordeal for allergy sufferers

The sun shines over North Anston with blue skies and fields of red
The sun shines over North Anston with blue skies and fields of red

The hot weather may seem heavenly for many - but for those allergic to pollen, rising temperatures can bring about almost hellish conditions.

More sun is predicted into this weekend, following a week in which thermometer levels remained well into the 20s in Sheffield, which means runny noses, sneezing and stinging eyes will continue for hayfever sufferers.

Dr Anna Shrimpton, consultant immunologist at the Northern General Hospital, said her team sees some of the city’s worst cases.

“It’s really rough, some people really can’t function properly. People think of hayfever as being a fairly trivial problem, but it can have a really big impact on an individual’s quality of life, such as whether a child can study for school or someone can get to work.

“People who know what I do have been asking lots of questions about hayfever over the last couple of weeks, so clearly there’s more of a problem at the moment.”

Dr Shrimpton said allergies may have been heightened during the current heatwave as both tree and grass pollen levels are high - a result of this year’s unseasonably cold Spring.

Antihistamine medications are the main treatment option for hayfever, but for the most severe allergies, desensitisation injections can be offered, where a patient is injected with the offending pollen.

“That’s for people who have tried everything and are still suffering,” said Dr Shrimpton.