Allergic rhinitis is frequently known as hay fever. Common symptoms include sneezing, stuffy nose, watery eyes, and a sore, scratchy throat. Possible triggers include lawn, pollen, dust mites, cockroaches, cigarette smoke, and perfume.
What is allergic rhinitis?
An allergen is a normally harmless substance that causes an allergy. Allergic rhinitis, or hay fever, is an allergic response to specific irritants. Pollen is the most typical irritant.
Nearly 8 percent of adults in the United States experience allergic rhinitis of some kind, according to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology (AAAAI). Between 10 to 30 percent of the around the world population may likewise have allergic rhinitis.
Symptoms of allergic rhinitis
Typical symptoms of allergic rhinitis include:
- a runny nose
- a stuffy nose
- an itchy nose
- a sore or scratchy throat
- itchy eyes
- watery eyes
- dark circles under the eyes
- frequent headaches
- eczema-type symptoms, such as having very dry, itchy skin that often blisters
- extreme fatigue.
You’ll typically feel one or more of these symptoms instantly after coming into contact with an irritant. Some symptoms, such as reoccurring headaches and fatigue, might only occur after long-term direct exposure to irritants. Fever isn’t really a symptom of hay fever.
What causes allergic rhinitis?
When your body enters contact with an irritant, it launches histamine, which is a natural chemical that defends your body from the allergen. This chemical causes allergic rhinitis and its symptoms, including a runny nose, sneezing, and itchy eyes.
In addition to pollen, other common causes include:
- animal dander, which is old skin
- feline saliva
During specific times of the year, pollen can be particularly troublesome. Tree and flower pollens are more common in the spring. Grasses and weeds produce more pollen in the summertime and fall.
What are the types of allergic rhinitis
The two types of allergic rhinitis are seasonal and seasonal, which lasts all year. Pollen-based allergic reactions are normally seasonal. Seasonal allergies generally take place due to level of sensitivity to dust mites, cockroaches, or animal dander. It’s possible to be in consistent contact with all these irritants daily. This is particularly true if you have a dog or pests in your house.
Risk factors for allergic rhinitis
Allergic reactions can affect anyone, however you’re more likely to establish allergic rhinitis if your family has a history of allergies.
Some external factors can set off or aggravate this condition, consisting of:
- cigarette smoke
- cold temperature levels
- air pollution
- wood smoke
How is allergic rhinitis detected?
If you have minor allergies, you’ll most likely just need a physical examination. Nevertheless, your doctor might carry out certain tests to find out the best treatment and prevention plan for you.
A skin prick test is one of the most common. Your doctor puts numerous substances onto your skin to see how your body responds to each one. Normally, a small red bump appears if you’re allergic to a substance.
A blood test, or radioallergosorbent test (RAST), is likewise common. The RAST determines the quantity of immunoglobin E antibodies to particular allergens in your blood.
Treatments for allergic rhinitis
You can treat your allergic rhinitis in a number of methods.
You can take antihistamines to treat allergies. They work by stopping your body from making histamine.
Some popular non-prescription (OTC) antihistamines include:
- Allegra (fexofenadine).
- Clarinex (desloratadine).
- Claritin (loratadine).
- Xyzal (levocetirizine).
- Zyrtec (cetirizine).
Speak with your doctor before beginning a brand-new medication. Make certain that a new allergic reaction medication will not hinder other medications or medical conditions.
You can use decongestants over a brief period to alleviate a stuffy nose and sinus pressure. Popular OTC decongestants include:
- Afrin nasal spray (oxymetazoline).
- Sudafed (pseudoephedrine).
- Sudafed PE (phenylephrine).
- Zyrtec-D (cetirizine with pseudoephedrine).
If you have high blood pressure or a genitourinary disease, talk to your doctor prior to using a decongestant.
Eye drops and nasal sprays
Eye drops and nasal sprays can help ease irritation and other allergy-related symptoms for a short time. However, you must prevent long-lasting use of these products.
Excessive using eye drops can cause a rebound effect. This indicates that, when you stop using them after a long period, your symptoms will be worse than prior to you started using eye drops.
Overusing nasal spray can cause a yeast infection to take place in the back of your nose. It can likewise produce a hole in your nasal septum.
Corticosteroids can likewise help with inflammation or immune responses. These steroids are generally readily available as injections, creams, or eye drops.
Your doctor might suggest immunotherapy, or allergic reaction shots, if you have severe allergic reactions. You can use this treatment strategy in combination with medications to control your symptoms. These shots decrease your immune response to certain irritants with time.
An allergic reaction shot routine starts with a buildup stage. During this phase, you’ll go to your specialist for a shot one to three times weekly for about 3 to six months to let your body get used to the irritant in the shot.
During the maintenance phase, you must see your specialist for shots about once monthly throughout three to five years. You may not observe a change till over a year after the maintenance stage begins. When you reach this point, it’s possible that your allergic reaction symptoms will fade or disappear entirely.
Some people experience severe allergies to an allergen in their shot. Numerous specialists ask you to wait in the office for 30 to 45 minutes after a shot to ensure that you do not have an intense or dangerous response to it.
Sublingual immunotherapy (SLIT)
SLIT includes placing a tablet including a mixture of numerous irritants under your tongue. It works likewise to allergy shots. You can take SLIT treatments, such as Oralair, at home after a preliminary examination with your doctor.
Possible side effects include itching in the mouth or ear and throat inflammation. In unusual cases, SLIT treatments can cause anaphylaxis. Talk with your doctor about SLIT to see if your allergic reactions will respond to this treatment.
Home remedies for allergic rhinitis
Home remedies will depend upon your allergens. If you have seasonal or pollen allergic reactions, you can try using an air conditioner rather of opening your windows. If possible, include a filter created for allergic reactions.
Using a dehumidifier or a high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter can help you manage your allergic reactions while inside. If you’re allergic to dust mites, wash your sheets and blankets in hot water that’s above 130 ° F (54.4 ° C). Including a HEPA filter to your vacuum and vacuuming regular might likewise help.
Allergic rhinitis in children
Children can establish allergic rhinitis, and it usually appears prior to the age of 10. If you notice that your child develops cold-like symptoms at the same time each year, they most likely have allergic rhinitis.
The symptoms in children resemble those in adults. Children normally develop watery, bloodshot eyes, which is called allergic conjunctivitis. If you discover wheezing or shortness of breath in addition to other symptoms, your child might have likewise established asthma.
Limitation your child’s direct exposure to allergens by keeping them inside and washing their clothes and sheets regularly during allergic reaction season. Lots of antihistamines, decongestants, and corticosteroids are offered to assist your child’s allergic reactions. However, some antihistamines can cause sleepiness or hyperactivity in your child, even in small dosages.
The result of treatment depends upon your condition. Seasonal allergic rhinitis generally isn’t really severe, and you can manage it well with medications. However, severe forms of this condition will likely require long-lasting treatment.
Avoiding allergic reactions
The best way to prevent allergy symptoms is to manage your allergies prior to your body has a chance to respond to substances adversely. The AAAAI suggests starting medications prior to seasonal allergy attacks. For example, if you’re sensitive to tree pollen in the spring, you might wish to start taking antihistamines prior to an allergy has the chance to happen.
Tips to avoid allergic reactions
- Stay inside your home when pollen counts are high.
- Prevent exercising outdoors early in the early morning.
- Take showers instantly after being outside.
- Keep your doors and windows shut as regularly as possible during allergy season.
- Keep your mouth and nose covered while carrying out yard work.
- Attempt not to rake leaves or trim the lawn.
- Remove carpets from your bed room if you’re worried about allergen.