allergic sniffles and coughs
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By IgE (Immunoglobulin E)

Allergic sniffles and coughs

Arab Today, arab today

Arab Today, arab today Allergic sniffles and coughs

Allergic sniffles and coughs
Oman - Arab Today

Allergic rhinitis is a condition where there is sneezing, nasal itching, and nasal obstruction. It is caused by IgE (Immunoglobulin E) mediated reactions within the nasal mucosa due to inhaled allergens, causing nasal inflammation. Though mild cases of allergic rhinitis are globally found, in severe cases, it greatly hinders the quality of life of the affected individual. It can be either seasonal or perennial.

Outdoor triggers of allergic rhinitis include weeds, grass, tree pollen, and mould spores. Indoor triggers include dust mites, pet dander, or mould that grows in humid indoor places such as carpets. Outdoor allergens cause seasonal allergic rhinitis (also known as hay fever), which typically occurs during the spring and summer. Indoor allergens can cause perennial (all year-round) allergic rhinitis. 

The prevalence of allergic rhinitis is very common in Oman. Studies show that in Omani population, 80 per cent of people with allergic rhinitis were sensitive to house dust mites and domestic cat’s fur. The prevalence of allergic rhinitis peaks from the second to the fourth decades of life and then reduces gradually. Allergic rhinitis is more frequently seen in people who suffer from bronchial asthma.

The presence of allergic rhinitis has been studied to significantly increase the probability of asthma in 40% of affected people. Skin eczema and allergic conjunctivitis may also occur in concurrence with this condition. Allergic rhinitis tends to run in families. If one or both parents suffer from allergic rhinitis, there is high chance of the children suffering from it.

Complications of allergic rhinitis include sinusitis (due to blockage of sinus openings and collection of mucous within the sinuses), eustachian tube blockage causing ear problems, nasal polyps and sleep apnoea/snoring. Symptoms of allergic rhinitis can be reduced by home remedies such as saline washes.

Over the counter anti allergy medications like anti-histaminics can also help in treating mild forms of allergic rhinitis. However if your symptoms are severe, your ENT doctor will examine your nasal cavities for signs of chronic inflammation or polyps. They may also prescribe topical anti-histaminics, corticosteroid nasal sprays, or leukotriene antagonists like montelukast to bring down your symptoms.

Nowadays, immunotherapy is an upcoming specialty in medicine, which effectively helps in dealing with such allergy related conditions. Prevention of exposure to allergens is the best method to control allergic rhinitis. Reducing the humidity inside the house, using air conditioners with high efficiency particulate air filters (HEPA), regular cleaning of curtains and carpets, using vacuum cleaners, and other things, can greatly reduce symptoms of allergic rhinitis in sufferers.

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