Difference between runny nose and allergies

Difference between runny nose and allergies

A reader asks Dr Lee on how to tell the difference between a runny nose or an allergy. Read her response

Cough, sniffle, sneeze. Does your child just have a cold or is there more to it? Dr Lee Bee Wah answers this question today: what's the difference between a runny nose and allergies?

Q: My child has been having a runny nose on and off. Could this be allergies? Will he ever outgrow his allergies? What should I do?

A: A persistent runny nose may be due to nasal allergy. Other very typical symptoms are actually repeated sneezing, itchiness of the nose and eyes, and blocked nose. These symptoms tend to occur over a long period of time, sometimes triggered by dust or temperature change. If these symptoms occur over a short period of time, then allergies are unlikely. Your child will likely outgrow his symptoms but nasal allergies may last a long time. Sometimes they persist even to adulthood, though the allergies may improve overtime.

About Dr Lee Bee Wah

Dr Lee Bee Wah is a Paediatrician from Mount Elizabeth Medical Centre. Dr Lee has a special interest in the areas of Paediatric Allergic Diseases, Epidemiology or allergy diseases in children, Allergen characterisation - and dust mite allergens, Probiotics in the prevention of allergic diseases and Childhood Vaccines.

Related: Is my baby allergic to formula?

Related: 8 truths about allergies

Related: Are any babies allergic to their mother’s milk?

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