There can be embarrassment associated with a runny nose, nasal congestion, nasal itching, or sneezing especially if these symptoms are a persistent problem. You walk around with tissues in your pocket and your home has at least one box of tissues in every room. Others treat you like you have a cold and avoid you.
The symptoms that you are experiencing may result because of a cold but could also be caused by environmental irritants such as allergens, cigarette smoke, chemicals, changes in temperature, or other factors. If your symptoms last for a long period of time then it is consider chronic rhinitis. Chronic rhinitis is most often caused by allergies but structural problems in the nose or chronic infections could also be the culprit.
Allergies can be seasonal or year round. Seasonal allergies consist of weeds in the fall, trees in the spring, and grasses in the summer. Molds occur most commonly in fall, spring, and summer. Year round allergens can be dust mites, cockroaches, and pet dander. Molds can also be considered a year round allergen when it grows on wallpaper, houseplants, carpeting, and upholstery.
When allergies are not the offender of chronic rhinitis, other causes could be to blame. Structural abnormalities or blockages could be the cause, such as a deviated nasal septum or nasal polyps. Medications or drugs can also cause or worsen rhinitis. Overuse of nasal decongestants worsen rhinitis. Hormone replacement therapy causes rhinitis. Chronic rhinitis due to hormone changes can be most evidently seen in pregnancy, however this usually resolves after delivery.
Determining the cause of your chronic symptoms can be as simple as visiting us at Michigan ENT and Allergy Specialists. We will obtain a detailed history of your symptoms and complete a physical exam. Depending on our findings we may discuss; medication therapy, allergy testing, scans, or the potential of surgery. If you are ready to determine the cause of your runny nose, nasal congestion, nasal itching, or sneezing contact our office to schedule an appointment at (616) 994-2770.