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Fall Allergies and Sinusitis

Autumn has arrived, and you can’t stop sneezing and sniffling. You may be suffering from allergic rhinitis or hay fever.

Ragweed: The Prime Cause of Fall Allergies continued...

For severe or persistent symptoms, a steroid nasal spray (Flonase, Nasonex, and so on) may be helpful. If you’ve developed a sinus infection, a course of antibiotics might be needed. Another option that works well for some patients is a leukotriene inhibitor, such as Singulair or Accolate. These medications block the release of leukotriene to help reduce inflammation and other symptoms of allergic rhinitis. If symptoms are especially troublesome, you might need immunotherapy (allergy shots). 

Experts say the best approach may be to start treatment early and combine various therapies Whichever prevention strategies and medications you decide upon, don’t wait until the last minute to start using them.

If you had hay fever in previous years, says Kao, odds are you’ll have it again this year. Starting medications before symptoms appear can limit both their severity and duration -- sometimes markedly.

 

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Reviewed on August 31, 2009

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