What is non-allergic rhinitis?

Not all rhinitis symptoms such as sneezing, runny or stuffy nose, itchy eyes, skin or mouth, are the result of an allergic reaction. Non-allergic rhinitis can develop from medications such as:

  • High blood pressure medications
  • Long-term use of nasal decongestant sprays
  • And other causes

What is allergic rhinitis?

Allergic rhinitis occurs when your body identifies common things in your home and indoor surroundings as harmful substances and your immune system reacts by producing antibodies that release histamine and other chemicals, causing an allergic reaction with symptoms of sneezing, runny or stuffy nose, itchy eyes, skin or mouth.

The triggers may be caused by:

  • Dust mites: Found throughout the house, these microscopic creatures thrive in warm, humid environments such as bedding, upholstered furniture and carpeting.
  • Pet allergens: People are not allergic to animal hair, but to an allergen found in the saliva and dander (dead skin flakes)—from cats and dogs, or the urine of animals with fur such as rabbits, hamsters, mice and guinea pigs.
  • Cockroaches: These home invaders can also cause allergic reactions.
  • Indoor molds: Mold and mildew need dampness and are typically found in basements, bathrooms or anywhere with a water problem.

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