Hay Fever (cont.)
Hay Fever Prevention
- You can't prevent hay fever altogether, but you can learn to cope with it.
- Follow the treatment recommendations of your health care provider. The medications are very effective but may take several days to reach full effectiveness.
- Moving to a new part of the country usually doesn't help. People who do this often find themselves with new allergies within a few years.
- Use air conditioning and limit outside exposure during hay fever season.
- Allergy shots may help reduce the severity of your symptoms.
- To keep from bringing your allergy indoors, do what you can to keep your home free of mold and other allergens.
Hay Fever Prognosis
Common complications of hay fever include the following:
- Secondary infection: This is a bacterial infection that occurs in tissues such as the mucous membranes of the nose, throat, or sinuses or the ear that have already been irritated and inflamed by the allergic reaction. Ear infection (otitis) or sinus infection (sinusitis) are common secondary infections of hay fever.
- Rebound nasal congestion (rhinitis medicamentosa): This may result from using decongestant nasal sprays more than twice daily for 3 consecutive days.
- Enlargement of lymph nodes in the nose and throat
- Decreased lung function
- Facial changes: Most of the facial changes are because of local inflammation and congestion. These are temporary and resolve with the treatment of the disease. These include facial swelling, redness around the nose, and allergic "shiners."
- The crease across the top of the nose caused by frequent nose wiping can persist in children with long-term hay fever.
Medically reviewed by Michael Manning, MD; American Board of Allergy & Immunology
Allergic rhinitis: Clinical manifestations, epidemiology, and diagnosis
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 5/10/2016
Aneela Naureen Hussain, MD, MBBS
Francisco Talavera, PharmD, PhD
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