Asthma and sinusitis are frequently associated with allergic rhinitis. Throat inflammation from allergic rhinitis is sometimes mistaken for inflammation from upper airway acid reflux, although both may exist simultaneously.
It is important to identify any possible allergic triggers. This is the primary recommended therapy for allergies whenever sensible. In some cases, such as pet allergies, this is difficult or impossible and other therapies are recommended.
Allergic rhinitis is inflammation occurring in the nose that is due to inhalant triggers such as:
- Dust mites
Allergy symptoms include:
- Runny nose
- Itchy, watery or red eyes
- Puffy eyes
- Postnasal drainage
- Nasal congestion
- Facial pressure or fullness
- Ear pressure
- Voice and throat problems
Many of the same medications used for sinusitis are also effective for allergies, but specific medications are also available and effective.
- Over the counter drugs. Over-the-counter or prescription antihistamines, which come in both tablet and spray form, are effective at addressing symptoms. Modern antihistamines produce less drowsiness than previous ones, such as Benadryl (diphenhydramine).
- Prescription antihistamines. Prescription sprays may provide a small degree of decongestant effect which is not typically seen with tablets. Nasal steroid sprays are the most commonly prescribed maintenance medication for allergic rhinitis. Proper daily use of this medication is required for symptomatic control. Singulair is an inhibitor of one part of the inflammatory cascade, the leukotrienes, that may be effective in specific situations.
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- Allergy shots. When standard medications do not completely address allergic symptoms, immunotherapy, or allergy shots, may be appropriate. Eligibility depends on a number of factors, but immunotherapy is considered the only cure for allergic sensitivities and can result in substantial improvements.