The science behind allergic rhinitis.
The immune system’s role is to protect the body from viruses, bacteria and various diseases. Allergic Rhinitis simply refers to inflammation of the mucous membrane of the nose, caused by the body’s immune system overreacting to an allergen. Allergic Rhinitis is extremely common. In fact, it affects 10% to 30% of the world’s population.3
What causes allergic rhinitis?
Allergy symptoms occur when your body’s immune system wrongly identifies a harmless substance as dangerous. These substances – such as pollens, pollutants, or dust mites – trigger the production of immunoglobulin E antibodies (IgE antibodies). Allergies can also be caused by certain foods.
The IgE antibodies bind to the body’s defence cells, known as mast cells, which triggers the release of chemicals such as histamine that are part of your body’s inflammatory response. These chemicals act on the cells, nerves and vessels of the nose to produce the typical symptoms of an allergy – sneezing, itching, congestion and a runny nose.3
Allergens exist in many different forms. Common forms include2:
- Pollens from trees, grasses or weeds
- Dust mites
- Pet dander
- Pet hair
- Certain foods