What is Allergic Rhinitis?
Allergic rhinitis is characterized by a runny nose, congestion and sneezing that results from allergies to substances in the environment. Symptoms tend to come in waves and vary in severity and frequency.
‘Seasonal’ allergies cause symptoms at certain times of the year whereas ‘perennial’ allergies occur year round and likely reflect an allergy to something indoors such as mold or dust mites.
Symptoms of allergic rhinitis can include:
- Runny nose and congestion
- Postnasal drip
- Itchy eyes and mouth
Allergic Rhinitis Treatment
Allergic rhinitis can be diagnosed by history and physical examination.
Physical signs consistent with allergic rhinitis include:
- Allergic shiners: dark circles under the eyes
- Dennie-Morgan lines: prominent lines and folds on the lower eyelids
- Allergic salute: a crease across the nose from rubbing
- Allergic facies: mouth breathing because of congestion
Treatment of allergic rhinitis includes:
- Avoidance of allergens and allergy testing if necessary
- Oral antihistamines such as Zyrtec, Claritin, or Allegra
- Intranasal steroids i.e. nasal spray such as Flonase
- Nasal antihistamine spray such as Azelastine
- Eye antihistamines such as Pataday if associated with itchy eyes
Check in with K if…
- You have general questions about your child’s condition
- You want general followup for your child
- You have questions about supportive care
- Your child’s symptoms don’t go away after treatment but are not alarming
See a doctor in person if…
- If symptoms persist or worsen
- If your child consistently snores at night
- If you think your child needs to be allergy tested
- If you’re worried something else is going on