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Rhinitis is an inflammation of the mucous membrane of the nose. It causes cold-like symptoms, such as sneezing and sniffling, watery eyes, and sometimes even an itchy throat.

There are two kinds of rhinitis; allergic rhinitis, and non-allergic rhinitis. In allergic rhinitis, inflammation is caused by an allergic reaction to a substance like pollen. In non-allergic rhinitis, the reaction may be caused by a variety of other factors including hormone changes, environmental factors, or a viral infection such as a cold.

The differences between the two conditions, and treatment options are detailed below:

What are the causes of rhinitis?

What are the causes of allergic rhinitis?

Allergic rhinitis is caused by either seasonal or perennial airborne allergens. Seasonal allergens include pollen, while perennial allergens include year-round substances like animal dander or dust. When a person with allergic rhinitis breathes in an allergen, their body releases a chemical called histamine, which causes allergy symptoms.

What are the causes of non-allergic rhinitis?

Non-allergic rhinitis can be triggered by:

  • Environmental or occupational irritants
  • Weather changes
  • Infections
  • Foods and beverages
  • Certain medications
  • Hormonal changes
  • Certain odours or irritants in the air

What are the rhinitis symptoms?

  • Congestion
  • Including sneezing, stuffy, or runny nose, or cough
  • Irritation
  • Itchy, watery, red, swollen, puffy eyes
  • Itchiness
  • In the back of the throat

How to treat rhinitis

Treatment methods differ depending on the type of rhinitis. See below for potential options.

How to treat non-allergic rhinitis?

Recommendations to treat non-allergic rhinitis include identifying and avoiding your triggers and seeing a doctor for suitable treatment. A healthcare professional can help you to discover what’s causing your symptoms and advise you on treatment.

How to treat allergic rhinitis

It’s estimated that allergic Rhinitis affects about one in every five people in the UK.
There is a range of medications available that can help to relieve your symptoms.

How do antihistamines treat allergic rhinitis?

When you have an allergic reaction, your body releases histamine into your bloodstream. Histamine causes symptoms like sneezing, runny nose, and itchy eyes.

Antihistamines work by preventing the actions of histamine. There are lots of effective antihistamines on the market, so you can choose the type that works best for you.

Benadryl Allergy Relief: a fast-acting allergy relief option, Benadryl Allergy Relief capsules contain acrivastine, which starts to work in 15 minutes

Benadryl One a Day 10mg Tablets: contains cetirizine and provides long lasting, all day relief from your allergy symptoms. It provides effective relief from hay fever, dust and pet allergy symptoms and skin allergies.