After the hottest April on record, hay fever sufferers are being warned of continued high pollen levels as a two-week heat wave is predicted to send temperatures soaring this weekend.

Allergy specialists at the Epsom and St Helier Trust are urging sufferers to prepare and seek advice to battle the unpleasant irritation which can cause itchy eyes and ears, a runny nose, and uncontrollable sneezing.

Even a change in weather can cause hay fever sufferers irritation with many experiencing ‘thunderstorm asthma’ caused when thunderstorms and heavy rain disrupts the air fracturing and multiplying pollen particles which can cause serious reactions.

Studies also show that hay fever can be disruptive to those taking summer exams having a dramatic affect on grades achieved.

Clinical nurse specialist in immunology, Amena Warner, said: "I would urge anyone with hay fever to seek advice from their local pharmacist.

"Even if your hay fever can’t be helped by over-the-counter medicines, we can still do something about it.

"We are one of the few NHS trusts nationally that offers a range of desensitisation therapies where sufferers are exposed to pollen in a controlled way so that they become tolerant to it for people with severe pollen allergy and pollen induced asthma."

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