Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Allergic rhinitis

What is allergic rhinitis?

Allergic rhinitis is a condition, characterized by inflammation in the internal part of the nose caused by allergens. The condition is also commonly referred to as hay fever.

What causes allergic rhinitis?

Allergic rhinitis occurs when an individual breathes in allergens such as dust, animal dander, pollen and mold. When such allergens are inhaled, the body’s immune system releases chemicals, which is known to produce an allergic reaction. Various irritants such as diesel exhaust, tobacco smoke and perfume can also trigger allergic reactions.

What are different types of allergic rhinitis?

There are two types of allergic rhinitis, namely:
·         Seasonal allergic rhinitis: This type of allergic rhinitis usually occurs during specific seasons like spring, early fall and summer.
·         Perennial allergic rhinitis: In this type, individuals experience allergic reactions throughout the year due to allergens such as dander, pet hair, mold, dust mites, etc.

How does allergic rhinitis spread?

Allergic rhinitis is not a contagious disease and does not spread from one person to another.

What are the symptoms of allergic rhinitis?
The various symptoms of allergic rhinitis include the following:

  •  Running nose
  •   Itchiness in nose, eyes, mouth and or skin
  • Teary eyes
  • Stuffy nose
  •   Irritability
  • Clogged ears
  •  Fatigue
  • Sore throat and coughing
  •  Headache
What is the treatment of allergic rhinitis?

The various methods to treat allergic rhinitis include:
·         Antihistamines: These are effective enough for treating allergic rhinitis. Antihistamines can also help prevent future bouts of allergy as this class of drugs effectively blocks the formation of histamine in the body.
·         Decongestants: These are used for getting relief from stuffy nose. Decongestants are also known to reduce the sinus pressure.
·         Nasal sprays and eye drops: These should be used only on a temporary basis. Eye drops as well as nasal sprays are given to provide relief from stuffy nose and teary eyes.
·         Immunotherapy: Immunotherapy is recommended only when the allergy has taken a severe turn. This kind of therapy is taken along with other medications to control symptoms. Allergy shots given for a period of time help decrease the body’s response to certain allergens. Another type of immunotherapy that has proven to be effective for past few years is known as sublingual tablets. This method consists of placing a tablet beneath the tongue several months before the allergy season is about to approach.

How can allergic rhinitis be prevented?

Allergic rhinitis can be prevented by limiting or avoiding exposure to the allergens which one cannot tolerate. It is also advisable that individuals begin taking antihistamines before the season approaches.

Diet and lifestyle changes in allergic rhinitis?

Individuals with allergic rhinitis should adhere to the following lifestyle changes:

  •  Prevent ways of getting exposed to allergens
  • Wash bedding weekly to avoid dust
  • Keep away stuffed toys from the room
  • Using a dehumidifier is essential to reduce the humidity
  • Have proper ventilation in kitchen and bathrooms
  • Taking nutritional supplements such as quercetin, spirulina, lactobacillus acidophilus and vitamin C can help in reducing the allergic bouts
What is Ayurvedic treatment of allergic rhinitis?

The various Ayurvedic herbs and preparations that are beneficial in the treatment of allergic rhinitis include turmeric, adulasa and tulsi. 

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