Chronic Rhinitis and Post Nasal Drip

Chronic rhinitis occurs when the inner lining of the nose is inflamed. It can be cause by certain allergens that may be perceived by the body to be foreign. The immune system sometimes overreacts to certain particles in the air that causes the body to create an immune response. As the immune system of the body attacks these allergens, it causes symptoms such as a runny nose and sneezing.

What are rhinitis and post nasal drip?

Chronic rhinitis and post nasal drip usually occur together when one experiences an allergic reaction to certain particles in the air. Chronic rhinitis refers to the inner lining of the nose to becoming inflamed and irritated for long periods while post-nasal drip refers to mucus accumulating in the back of the nose and throat, causing the feeling of the mucus dripping downward from the back of the nose. A common characteristic of chronic rhinitis is the post nasal drip.

What conditions cause chronic rhinitis?

Chronic rhinitis is usually caused by certain particles in the air that irritate the nasal passages and causing an allergic reaction from the body. One of the most common of these particles are pollens that come from trees, weeds and grasses. Other particles that may cause chronic rhinitis include dust mites, dead skin cells, mold as well as cockroaches. Chemicals, wood dust and cereal grain can also cause an allergic reaction in people that may lead to chronic rhinitis.

What are the symptoms?

The most common symptom of chronic rhinitis is frequent sneezing especially after waking up in the morning. Irritation of the nasal passages may be causing this as a result to an allergic response of the body to the allergen. One may also begin to develop a runny nose and post nasal drip. The mucus that may be drained from a runny nose caused by allergic rhinitis is usually clear and thin. The mucus may become thicker and yellowish if one also develops a nasal or sinus infection. Other symptoms of chronic rhinitis also include watery and itchy eyes as well as irritated or itchy nose, throat or ears.

How can chronic rhinitis and post nasal drip be treated?

Treatment for chronic rhinitis focuses on trying to relieve the symptoms. There is currently no cure for rhinitis. The best treatment is always avoiding the allergens that may cause it. For particle allergens such as pollen, one should try to use pollen masks when cleaning or going outside to help reduce the risk of inhaling the allergen. The use of an air purifier in the home may also be considered in order to reduce the amount of allergens found in indoor air. Keeping the house clean and removing things that may bring the allergens into the home may also help.

As for medication to treat rhinitis, antihistamines are usually used to block the reaction caused by histamine which leads to the allergic symptoms usually experienced by people. But these medications are effective when given prior to exposure. Decongestants are used to help reduce the swelling of the sinuses and the nasal passages temporarily to aid breathing. But decongestants may also cause the blood pressure to rise and may not be recommended for people with high blood pressure. Other medication for treating chronic rhinitis include, nasal sprays, steroids, allergy shots, and mucus thinning agents.