Hay fever sufferers are used to being afflicted by itchy eyes, runny noses and headaches when the summer temperatures rise. But this year, despite the inclement weather, the condition is affecting people who have never seriously experienced it before. Dr Adrian Morris, Adult and Children’s Allergy Consultant and fellow of the Royal Society of Medicine, said: “We have had a period of changing weather, from very hot days to torrential rain, so the pollen from the grasses has gone into overdrive.“People who are mild hay fever sufferers, and may only have previously felt itchy noes for example, never thought it was an issue until now because of the high pollen count recently.”This is being blamed in part on 2018’s heatwave, which Dr Carsten Ambelas Skjoth, a professor in atmospheric science at Worcester University, said could have caused people to develop hay fever a year on.Dr Skjoth, who is working with the Met Office on pollen forecasting methods, added: “It could be that those people suffering from hay fever now had been sensitised to it last year. This time was very unusual because of the beautiful summer, which meant that for long periods of time there were consistently high amounts of grass pollen in the air. “Hay fever can be deadly for the 3.3million people with asthma who are triggered by pollen, because this allergic reaction can inflame the airways and trigger asthma symptoms such as wheezing and shortness of breath.“Grass pollen is due to spike this month and we’d advise anyone with asthma and hay fever to make sure they keep their blue reliever inhaler with them at all times. They should also take hay fever medicines and their preventer inhaler (usually brown) as prescribed.” “It could be this trigger that explains why these people are only experiencing hay fever symptoms now. Although people have the potential get hay fever they don’t always have the symptoms straight away.” A fuzzy bumble bee gathers pollen from an aster blossomCredit:Westhoff/E+ Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings. Pollen experts have advised anyone with the condition to carry medication at all times amid fears of a surge in grass pollen levels in July.Colette Harris, Head of Health Advice at Asthma UK, said: “People can develop hay fever, caused by a pollen allergy, at any point in their life and this can cause hay fever symptoms such as itchy throat and eyes and sneezing. Hay fever has been reported to be on the rise in general in recent years, attributed to an increase in air pollution which causes pollen grains to weaken, and from dryer temperatures resulting from global warming. The common allergy is reaching almost epidemic proportions in the UK, with chemists having to place their hay fever medications at the front of the shop to cater to the demand.The number of adult hay fever sufferers in the UK grew from 26 per cent in 2017 to 31 per cent last year, with a million new people buying medicines to treat the allergy for the first time in 2018.