Allergic Rhinitis

Allergic Rhinitis in Children

Allergies are very common among young children, but they are more developed in children from families with a history of allergies. Since it’s impossible for parents to control things their child is exposed to like food, weather etc but it’s the parent’s duty to regularly monitor a child for symptoms. No parent or guardian wants their child to suffer.

Early identification of allergies in children improves the quality of life. If your child is suffering from allergies you may consult our paediatric ENT specialist for allergic rhinitis.Our team has an Allergy Specialist doctor as well and we will jointly advise you the best way forward to manage your child’s condition.

Overview

Allergic Rhinitis (commonly known as hay fever) is an inflammation that occurs in the lining of the  eyes, nose, and throat when airborne irritants trigger a reaction. This reaction causes the release of certain chemicals histamine which causes the allergic symptoms. It causes swelling, itching, sneezing, and mucus build up in the lining of nasal passage, eyelids, and sinuses. Allergic Rhinitis in children can happen on a seasonal basis which is more often in younger kids, or sometimes all the year round – perennial. The allergens that most commonly cause seasonal allergic rhinitis include pollens from trees, grasses, and weeds, as well as spores from fungi and molds. The allergens that most commonly cause perennial allergic rhinitis are dust mites, cockroaches, animal dander, and fungi or molds.

Indeed, there is usually a family history of allergic rhinitis.Some children may also have food allergies, skin related allergies ( eczema ), reaction in the lungs ( asthma) and eyes (allergic conjunctivitis).

Causes

The most common causes of allergic rhinitis in children are:

  • Animal dander
  • Dust mites
  • Mold
  • Pollen from trees, grass, or weeds
  • Tobacco smoke
  • Air pollution
  • Fumes
  • Humidity or Cold Temperatures
  • Perfumes or colognes
  • Wood smoke
  • Chemicals

Risk Factors

Children with a chronic disease like asthma or eczema are at a higher risk for rhinitis. Allergic Rhinitis is the most common childhood ailment caused by allergies. It is commonly seen in kids with parents’ history of allergy. If you suspect any symptoms of allergic rhinitis in children you may immediately consult an ENT doctor.

Symptoms

The following are the children allergic rhinitis symptoms:

  • Itchy eyes, throat, nose, and ears
  • Sneezing
  • Running nose
  • Nosebleeds
  • Sore throat
  • Stuffy nose
  • Dry or itchy skin
  • Coughing
  • Dark circles
  • Frequent headaches
  • Excessive fatigue
  • Ear infection
  • Breathing from mouth

Breathing from mouth, ear infection, snoring, are few signs in children you should not ignore. While these may be caused by allergic rhinitis, it could also be due to enlarged adenoids or turbinates. It is advisable to talk to an ENT doctor if your child has such symptoms, for a correct diagnosis.

Diagnosis of Allergic Rhinitis

An ear, nose, and throat specialist performs a physical examination. However, the specialist may prescribe certain tests depending on the severity of the condition. Some common test for allergic rhinitis in children include:

  • Skin prick test: to determine the condition through pricking allergen into skin and identify an allergic reaction
  • The Radioallergosorbent test (RAST): It is a blood test used to measure blood immunoglobulin levels
  • A nasal endoscopy or an x-ray may be advised to rule out other conditions such as enlarged adenoids or turbinates.

Treatment

Allergic Rhinitis Treatment for children is decided by the ENT doctor along with our Allergy specialist upon diagnoses. The treatment includes:

  • Allergen avoidance measures
  • Nasal washing or saline sprays
  • Medicated nasal sprays
  • Antihistamines
  • Decongestants
  • Eye drops
  • Immunotherapy

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