The "Hay Fever Season" really only caters to teh period where pollen counts are above a certain level and the most people are affected. It deos continue before and after this period. I remember a wall chart from many years ago listing the pollens that were released that month, and it was year roundFrom Asthma UK
The problem of "Winter Hay Fever" is apparently masked as many people write it off as a cold.
The other issue is non-native plants that have flourished in the UK during recent mild winters Ragweed (from the US) is a particular irritant at this time of the year
According to one article
Hayfever WINTER WARNING: UK allergy to kick up in DECEMBER thanks to ragweed pollen
ALLERGY sufferers are facing autumn hayfever hell thanks to warm weather and a freak weed invasion.
Pollen spewed out by super-irritant ragweed will have Britons streaming and sneezing into the start of December, experts warn.
The plant, native to the US, is gradually infesting the British countryside thanks to a run of mild winters.
It is a more potent allergen than native grasses and moulds which are common triggers at this time of year.
Allergy expert Max Wiseberg, creator of HayMax allergen barrier balm, said: “Ragweed is a north American plant but is has been steadily coming over to Europe and the UK.
“Warmer weather over the past few autumns and winters has increased its spread and the worry is that the pollen is far more potent than our weeds, grasses and fungal spores.
“These are the sorts of things which set off allergies at this time of year but hayfever sufferers are now facing a double whammy with ragweed added into the mix.
“People will start noticing any time now and it is not until the first widespread, harsh frost that the plants die off and the problem eases – so we are looking at the next couple of months.
“We expect this year to be worst than last year for autumn hayfever.”
Nottingham-based GP Dr Ian Campbell said waiting rooms are already filling up with people needing antihistamines.
More patients are coming forward this autumn with late symptoms compared to the past few years, he added.
He said: “We've seen a steady flow of hayfever patients this September and October.
“Overall, year on year, we are seeing more patients with autumn based hayfever symptoms.”
He said although there is less pollen in the air compared to the summer months, fungal spores are rife at this time of year.
“We are seeing hayfever more commonly in the autumn months,” he added.
“There’s less pollen around but increased exposure to mould spores.
Ragweed is a north American plant which has steadily spread to the UK due to warmer weather
“The increase in cases may be due to increased mould spores being in the air, increased awareness by the public who the seek professional help, or simply an increase in allergies generally.”
Ragweed pollen can not only trigger hayfever but also bring on the so-called pollen-fruit syndrome (also known as oral allergy syndrome) in those with no previous problems.
The condition occurs when after exposure to ragweed, people later experience an allergic reaction to similar proteins present in fruits and vegetables.
Amena Warner, head of clinical services at Allergy UK, said: “We are aware of the issue with ragweed and it can cause allergic rhinitis – which is the technological term for symptoms of hayfever – in some people.
Ragweed pollen can create further problems including asthma symptoms and pollen-fruit syndrome
“Ragweed pollen is something that can get into the lungs and it is important to treat early because after two to three years this can start to bring on symptoms of asthma.
“It can also bring on pollen-fruit syndrome, not in everybody who is exposed, but in some people.
“This happens when ragweed causes a reaction leading to allergic rhinitis symptoms.
“Ragweed pollen contains similar proteins to those present in some fruit and vegetables and so when the person eats these at a later date the immune system, having been primed by the ragweed, reacts and can cause swollen lips and mouth irritation.”