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- Allergic rhinitis, often called hay fever, is a common condition that causes symptoms such as sneezing, stuffy nose, runny nose, watery eyes and itching of the nose, eyes or the roof of the mouth.
- These nasal allergies are estimated to affect approximately 50 million people in the United States, and its prevalence is increasing affecting as many as 30 percent of adults and up to 40 percent of children.
- 16.9 million adults and 6.7 million children have been diagnosed with hay fever in the last year.
- More than 13.4 million visits to physician offices, hospital outpatient departments and emergency departments were due to allergic rhinitis.
- Allergic rhinitis can be seasonal or perennial. Symptoms of seasonal allergic rhinitis occur in spring, summer and/or early fall. They are usually caused by allergic sensitivity to pollens from trees, grasses or weeds, or to airborne mold spores. People with perennial allergic rhinitis experience symptoms year-round. It is generally caused by sensitivity to house dust mites, animal dander, cockroaches and/or mold spores. Underlying or hidden food allergies rarely cause perennial nasal symptoms.
- Once diagnosed, allergic rhinitis treatment options are: avoidance, eliminating or decreasing your exposure to the irritants or allergens that trigger your symptoms, medication and immunotherapy (allergy shots).
- Immunotherapy (allergy shots) helps reduce hay fever symptoms in about 85 percent of people with allergic rhinitis.
- Allergic diseases, which include asthma, are the fifth most prevalent chronic diseases in all ages, and the third most common in children.
- 8.3 million American children have respiratory allergies.
- An estimated 9.5 million American children have skin allergies.
- Food allergies in children are on the rise, affecting nearly 6 million or 8% of children