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Allergic Rhinitis Medicine

Allergic Rhinitis is the medical term for hay fever or allergies. You have an allergy when your body overreacts to things that don’t cause problems for most people. These things are called allergens. Your body’s overreaction to the allergens is what causes symptoms.

There are two types of allergic rhinitis:

  • Seasonal: An allergic reaction to pollen and/or mold spores in the air. Flowering plants release pollen. Pollen is easily inhaled through the air. Symptoms are seasonal and usually occur in spring, late summer, and fall.
  • Perennial: Caused by other allergens such as pet hair or dander, dust mites, or mold. Symptoms occur year-round.

Causes of Allergic Rhinitis

Your immune system mistakes a harmless airborne substance for something harmful when you have hay fever. When you have hay fever, your immune system produces antibodies against this harmless substance. Your immune system receives a signal from the antibodies the next time you are exposed to the substance, which causes it to release chemicals such as histamine into your bloodstream, causing the symptoms of hay fever.

Risk Factors of Allergic Rhinitis

  • Having a mother who smoked during your first year of life
  • Having a blood relative with allergies or asthma
  • Having atopic dermatitis
  • Having other allergies or asthma
  • Living or working in an environment that constantly exposes you to allergens such as animal dander or dust mites

Symptoms of Allergic Rhinitis

  • Postnasal drip
  • Watery, itchy, red eyes (allergic conjunctivitis)
  • Fatigue
  • Itchy nose, the roof of mouth or throat
  • Runny nose and nasal congestion
  • Sneezing
  • Cough
  • Swollen, blue-colored skin under the eyes

Diagnosis of Allergic Rhinitis

Your doctor will examine you, ask you about your symptoms, and assess you for other conditions, such as a cold or asthma. A blood sample may be taken and sent to a lab for testing to measure your antibodies to specific allergens. Immunoglobulin E (IgE) testing is the name given to this blood test. It can detect almost all types of allergies. To find out what allergens are causing your symptoms, your doctor may recommend a skin prick test.

Treatment for Allergic Rhinitis

The best thing you can do to avoid your hay fever triggers is to limit your exposure. Over-the-counter medications may suffice if your hay fever isn’t too severe. Medications can be prescribed for more severe symptoms. Combining allergy medications can provide the best relief for many people. If you’re not sure what works best for you, you may have to try several options.

Medication for Allergic Rhinitis

1. Nasal corticosteroids

2. Antihistamine

3. Decongestants

  • Pseudoephedrine (Sudafed, Afrinol
  • Phenylephrine Hydrochloride (Neo-Synephrine)
  • Oxymetazoline (Afrin)

4. Oral corticosteroids

  • Prednisone