Allergic Rhinitis (Hay Fever)

Allergic Rhinitis (Hay Fever)

Allergic Rhinitis in Turkey, Istanbul

Rhinitis is an inflammatory reaction of the tissue called the mucous membrane lining the inside of the nose. About half of rhinitis is due to allergies.

Allergic rhinitis is the complaints and findings that occur as a result of a non-microbial inflammation in the nose of people who are sensitive to this allergen when an allergen in the environment is taken into the nose during breathing and adheres to the inner surface of the nose.

The disease was initially misnamed as ‘hay fever’, later it was determined that the disease was related to pollen, but the term ‘hay fever’ continued to be used.

What is the frequency of allergic rhinitis?

It is the most common allergic disease. It affects approximately 20% of the society. A large number of people suffer from allergic rhinitis each year. While some get through very lightly, it is very heavy for others, hindering their work and impairing their quality of life.

Symptoms of rhinitis; runny nose, sneezing, itchy nose, stuffy nose, decreased sense of smell, watery eyes and tiredness. Indirect rhinitis symptoms such as difficulty in perception and sleep disturbance also affect daily life negatively. The disease can occur at any age, but usually begins between the ages of 1-20. Often the same or similar diseases are present in the family.
Hay Fever

Frequently Asked Questions About Allergic Rhinitis

The main complaints and findings can be listed as follows:
Nose itching, watering – transparent discharge
Sneezing, sneezing spells
Itching on the palate
Cough and sore throat
Desire to clear the throat
Eyes watering and itching

We can classify allergic rhinitis as follows:

seasonal allergic rhinitis
It occurs as a result of the development of allergy to tree pollen, meadow pollen and weed pollen. Complaints are evident during periods when these allergens are concentrated in the atmosphere. The duration of the disease during the year is closely related to the geographical region and climate. Outside the pollen season, patients are generally comfortable. Tree pollens in the early spring, meadow pollens in the later spring and early summer, and weed pollens from mid-summer to autumn can cause these complaints.

Year-round Allergic Rhinitis
It is a form of allergic rhinitis in which contact with allergens continues throughout the year and complaints generally spread throughout the year. Causative allergens are house dust mites (mites), cockroaches, pet allergens (such as cat, dog, hamster), and fungal spores (mildew). The most important allergen is house dust mites (mites). The fact that the patient is constantly exposed to mite allergens in his living environment causes his complaints to continue throughout the year. Cockroaches are also an important source of indoor allergens. Rhinitis complaints occur when allergy sufferers are exposed to cockroach allergens. Another indoor allergen is pet allergens. Cat antigens are especially important. It can persist for months in the infected environment. It has been detected at high levels not only in the home, but also in schools, workplaces and public transportation vehicles. In addition, in those with fungal (mold) allergy, exposure to domestic fungi will trigger complaints.

Occupational Allergic Rhinitis
It depends on allergens or irritants in the working environment. Allergic rhinitis symptoms such as sneezing, runny nose and nasal congestion occur after entering the working environment. Patients are comfortable on weekends and holidays.

The diagnosis is made by the patient’s history, physical examination findings, allergy skin test and examination of the nasal mucosa swab.

Animal and plant proteins, which are small and light enough to be carried in the air, accumulate on the membranes in our eyes, nose and throat. Pollen, fungal spores, animal dander and house dust are the most common of these particles. In the early spring, allergic rhinitis is often caused by pollen or trees commonly found in the environment. In late spring, pollen originates from meadows.
Colorful ornamental plants rarely cause allergies because their pollen is too heavy to be airborne.
Molds are molds that mold bread and cause spoilage of fruits. They are also found in dry leaves, meadows, straw, seeds, and other plants and soil. Since they are resistant to cold, the allergy season is long and spores are in the air all year except when the snow covers the soil. Indoors, molds live on houseplants and their potting soil. Besides damp places such as basements and laundry rooms, they are also found in cheese and fermented beverages.

In approximately 30-40% of patients with Hay Fever, bronchial tenderness and allergic asthma may coexist, less frequently with other allergic diseases.

Treatment can be grouped under 4 different headings:
1- Cessation of contact with allergen stimuli,
2- Drug therapy,
3-Hyposensibilization (vaccine treatment),
4-Surgical treatment

cessation of contact with allergen stimuli
The main method in the treatment of allergic rhinitis is to be protected from allergens, as in all allergic diseases. In pollen allergy, this is not easy and cannot be fully realized.

Measures to be taken to protect from pollen;
Do not go out in the open air between 05:00 and 10:00 in the morning when the pollen is the most. However, you can go out with masks that cover the mouth and nose. Do not exercise outdoors during pollen time. Hair holds dust. Therefore, every evening wash your hair and take a shower. So you can get rid of the dust on you. When children come from the street, have them change their clothes immediately. Do not open the windows while driving. Use the air conditioner for air exchange. Close your doors and windows tightly during pollen time. Change the air conditioner filter frequently if you have it in your home or office. In recent years, pollen filters have been used in most of the air conditioners. It is useful to renew these filters as they wear out. Thus, you can prevent dust from outside. Prefer the seaside for your holiday. Use glasses and a hat outside. Wash the glasses daily under running water. Do not take off your daily clothes in the bedroom. Consult a doctor for allergies. Avoid mowing the lawn or wear a mask. However, even if these measures are fully implemented, their effectiveness is quite low. In order to be protected from house dust mites, the main precautions are to stay away from the humid environment, at least to remove carpets, rugs and similar dust-retaining items in the bedroom, to clean wet floors, not to be in that environment while cleaning, to use mite allergen-proof mattresses, quilts and pillowcases.

As a result of a careful examination by your otolaryngologist, your doctor will decide whether any infection or structural disorder is causing your complaints and the appropriate treatment for them. Drugs used in the treatment of allergies include:
cortisone drugs
These drugs can be used individually or in combination according to the recommendation of your doctor.

Vaccine treatment:
It is applied if the complaints persist for more than two years despite trying to cut off contact with allergens and drug treatment. The process is done by injecting certain amounts of the allergen into the body. The response of the person’s immune system is tried to be changed, the effect is seen slowly and only provides recovery against the substance in the vaccine.

Surgical treatment:
It is performed for the overgrown nasal concha or polyps that are underlying or subsequently developed.

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