Also known as: allergic rhinitis, hay fever.
What is rhinitis?
Allergic rhinitis usually presents in early childhood as an inflammatory reaction in the eyes, nose and throat caused by the body’s response to an allergen (an irritant like tree, grass or weed pollen, pet dander, dust mites, mold, cockroach waste, and others).
Allergic rhinitis may be seasonal or may occur all year long (perennial).
What causes rhinitis?
Substances known as allergens cause part of the body’s immune system (IgE) to trigger the release of histamine from cells. Histamine causes the inflammatory swelling, itching, and fluid production in the nose, sinuses, and eyelids.
What are the symptoms of rhinitis?
Common symptoms include:
- runny nose
- itching of the nose, throat, eyes, mouth and ears
Children with perennial rhinitis may in addition, present with recurrent ear infections, breathing through the mouth, snoring, and the “allergic salute” which is rubbing of the itchy nose upwards causing a crease to form across the bridge of the nose.
What are rhinitis care options?
Avoiding the substance(s) causing the problem is the best first step. Antihistamines, decongestants, corticosteroids, or allergy shots (desensitization or immunotherapy), and/or other drugs are of value in managing the condition.
Reviewed by: Jack Wolfsdorf, MD, FAAP
This page was last updated on: May 12, 2021 09:43 AM
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Pollen allergy is the common name for allergic reactions caused by exposure to a variety of particles like pollen, dust mites, animal fur, mold, etc. It may occur seasonally or all year round.
Allergy Immunotherapy Treatment
Allergy shots reprogram the body’s immune system to reduce or eliminate allergic symptoms. They offer increased quality of life and are the only treatment available that provide long-term relief by eliminating or reducing allergic symptoms. Allergy shots are not effective for food allergies.