Experts have said that the hay fever season will begin three weeks earlier this year than it has done previously.
Hay fever sufferers have been warned to stay inside as a so-called ‘pollen bomb’ descends on the UK that could cause potentially life-threatening asthma attacks.
Hay fever season’s early arrival is all down to the recent, unusually warm winter, prompting birch tree pollen - which affects one in four hay fever sufferers - to be released earlier.
Warm winter means pollen is released earlier
Allergy expert Dr Jean Emberlin told The Sun, "When you get warmth like that in winter, it gives the trees a real push to open up and start releasing pollen.
"We had some bad weather at the beginning of March which temporarily put a halt to it or we could have seen a very, very early birch pollen season."
3.3 million people in the UK could be affected
Around 3.3 million people in the UK suffer from asthma which is worsened by pollen.
Sonia Munde, head of Asthma UK, told The Sun, “A deadly pollen bomb is due to hit this week, putting people with asthma at risk of a potentially life-threatening asthma attack.
“Trees have been releasing their pollen for several weeks, but the warm spring weather is going to make these pollen levels spike.”
Experts have recommended that asthma sufferers use their prescribed medication to soothe their irritated airways.
This article originally appeared on our sister site, Yorkshire Evening Post