What is hay fever?
Hay fever, also called acute allergic rhinitis, causes cold-like signs and symptoms, such as a runny nose, itchy eyes, congestion, sneezing and sinus pressure.1
Unlike a cold that is caused by a virus, hay fever is caused by an allergic response to outdoor or indoor allergens, such as pollen, dust mites, or tiny flecks of skin and saliva shed by cats, dogs, and other animals with fur or feathers (pet dander).1
You may have hay fever if you have one or more of the following symptoms:1
- Runny nose and nasal congestion
- Watery, itchy, red eyes
- Itchy nose, roof of mouth or throat
- Swollen, blue-colored skin under the eyes
- Postnasal drip
- Feeling tired
There’s no way to avoid getting hay fever. If you have hay fever, the best thing to do is:
- Try lessening your exposure to the allergens that cause your symptoms.
- Take allergy medication, such as a non-sedating allergy medication before you’re exposed to the allergens, as directed by your doctor. 1
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- Mayo Clinic. Hay fever. Overview. [online] 1 August 2018 [Cited] 7 November 2018. Available from URL: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/hay-fever/symptoms-causes/syc-20373039?p=1