Health Services

Allergies

EphNotes

ALLERGIC RHINITIS

If you have allergies, your body overreacts to the presence of foreign substances, or “allergy triggers.” Allergic rhinitis is a common allergic reaction that is an inflammation in the lining of the nose. The most common allergic rhinitis symptoms are similar to those of the common cold.

  • Stuffy nose
  • Sneezing
  • Itchy nose
  • Itchy, watery eyes
  • Runny nose

Allergy triggers vary from person to person. They include seasonal allergies such as pollen and year-round allergies such as dust mites, animal dander, and mold spores.

  • Pollen - released from trees, grasses or weeds.
  • Dust mites – invisible, eight-legged creatures that live in dust.
  • Animal dander – skin scales that furry animals shed.
  • Mold spores – released from molds that form in damp, humid places.

NONALLERGIC RHINITIS

Nonallergic rhinitis is an inflammation in the lining of the nose that is not caused by an allergic reaction. The symptoms are similar to those of allergic rhinitis and include stuffiness, runny nose, and postnasal drip. Common causes of nonallergic rhinitis include:

  • Temperature changes
  • Cold air
  • Air pollutants
  • Strong odors
  • Infections

AVOIDING ALLERGY TRIGGERS

Pollen: Keep your doors and windows closed. use an air conditioner. Stay indoors when pollen levels are high.
Mold Spores: Use a dehumidifier in damp rooms. Keep plants our of your bedroom.
Dust Mites: Use allergy-proof covers on your box spring, mattress, and pillows. Remove as many “dust collectors” from your bedroom as possible.
Animal Dander: Keep pets out of your bedroom and out of the house when possible.

TREATING RHINITIS

Antihistamines, decongestants, and nasal sprays can all be used to treat allergies. These are available over the counter by prescription.

Information provided by Flonase®.

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