You can blame your own body’s immunological response as well as genetics for your tendency toward nasal allergies, also known as allergic rhinitis. Of course, nasal allergies can also occur from prolonged exposure to certain substances called allergens or even exposure to pollution, cigarette smoke or being born with a low birth weight.
Doctors don’t really know why some people have more sensitivity to one substance over another, but they do know your body’s response to these allergens. What happens is that when an allergen gets past your nasal defenses, your immune system perceives it as an attack and will retaliate. During this retaliation, your body releases a chemical called histamine, which is the reason why your eyes will get teary and your nose starts to run. Some people may develop breathing problems, wheezing or even sneezing.
Many causes of nasal allergies are from airborne allergens that are breathed in through the nose but the sources are vastly different. Pollen is by far the most prevalent reason why allergies are formed in the first place and different areas of the country will have different levels of pollen, depending on what is growing and flowering at the time. Ragweed travels far and wide so even if you don’t have any growing in your area, you can still be allergic to it. Grass, flowering bushes, and a variety of trees can cause nasal allergies thanks to the pollen and other natural substances they release.
Dust And Animal Dander
Dust often tickles the nose and makes people sneeze but it does not always cause nasal allergies. However, if you have dust mites, tiny microscopic organisms, in your mattress, furniture or carpeting, these could be the true culprits. You will know for certain if your allergies persist even during winter months when outside pollen is at an all time low.
Animal dander can cause real problems with allergic reactions as well. Dander settles into carpets and furniture so even if you get rid of your cat or dog, you can still experience nasal allergies. Only a thorough vacuuming and carpet and upholstery shampooing can greatly lessen the dander population.
Typically, the symptoms of nasal allergies start off with some nose itching as well as sneezing, which is the body’s way to try and get rid of the allergen. From there, your nose could start running which is the body’s way to wash the foreign substance away. From there, you start to develop a stuffy nose and develop sensitivity to other irritants a few hours after your initial exposure. This allergic response could potentially last for weeks or until the pollen or irritant is gone. For some people, nasal allergies are a major pain in the rear and sometimes can develop into more serious illness like sinus infections and asthma.
Relief from your nasal allergies will depend on the type of medical treatment you receive. There are anti-histamines, which help with the runny nose and sneezing. Decongestants help relieve the stuffiness and can be paired with anti-histamines. Allergy shots and steroid nasal sprays are other possible treatments. Between you and your doctor, you can experiment until you find the right combination of drugs to best help relieve your nasal allergies.