Nonallergic Rhinitis – Causes, Symptoms and Treatment Methods

Nonallergic rhinitis is a syndrome resulting from nasal inflammation that encompasses several distinct diagnoses. Nonallergic rhinitis may be diagnosed by means of clinical evaluation or by means of allergen skin testing or radioallergosorbent testing. This type of rhinitis is not as well understood. Although not triggered by allergy, the symptoms are often the same as seen with allergic rhinitis. The symptoms of nonallergic rhinitis are similar to those of hay fever (allergic rhinitis), but no allergy is involved. Nonallergic rhinitis affects approximately 17 million people in the U.S.- both children and adults. The distinction between allergic and nonallergic rhinitis can be difficult to distinguish clinically, but the distinction may be important for prognosis and treatment decisions. Many symptoms of nonallergic rhinitis are similar to allergic rhinitis, but are more chronic, occurring year-round, and are often worse in winter. Irritants such as fumes, fresh newsprint, strong odors, smoke and various types of dust may bring on symptoms. A diagnosis of nonallergic rhinitis is made after an allergy cause is ruled out. This often requires allergy skin or blood tests. A physical examination, allergy testing and a CT scan of the nose and sinuses are often used to assess and diagnose the condition of nonallergic rhinitis.

Causes of Nonallergic rhinitis

The common causes and risk factor’s of Nonallergic rhinitis include the following:

Blood vessels in your nose expanding (dilating), filling the nasal lining with blood and fluid.

Inflammation of the lining of the nose.

Smoke and other irritants.

Temperature or atmospheric changes.


Psychological and Emotional factors.

Prolonged use of decongestant nasal drops or sprays.

Exposure to irritants.

Symptoms of Nonallergic rhinitis

Some sign and symptoms related to Nonallergic rhinitis are as follows:

Stuffy nose.


Mucus (phlegm) in the throat (postnasal drip).


Postnasal drainage.

Itchy nose, throat, eyes, and ears.

Treatment of Nonallergic rhinitis

Here is list of the methods for treating Nonallergic rhinitis:

Use an over-the-counter nasal saline spray or homemade saltwater solution to flush the nose of irritants and help thin the mucus and soothe the membranes in your nose.

Antihistamines help to reduce the effects of histamine, which can decrease the symptoms of itching, sneezing, or runny nose.

Turbinate reduction is also used.

If your symptoms aren’t easily controlled by decongestants or antihistamines, your doctor may suggest a prescription corticosteroid nasal spray, such as budesonide (Rhinocort), fluticasone (Flonase), mometasone (Nasonex) or triamcinolone (Nasacort).

Pseudoephedrine-containing drugs (Sudafed, Actifed, others) and phenylephrine.

Surgery has a limited role.