You probably know the classic signs of hay fever, like a runny nose, congestion and watery eyes. In addition, some people experience a rash or skin irritation as one of their symptoms.
What is Hay Fever?
Hay fever is also known as allergic rhinitis. It occurs when your immune system mistakes something harmless in the environment as a threat.
Hay fever can be either seasonal or last year-round depending on what triggers your symptoms. Some common causes include:
- Pollen from trees, grass or weeds
- Mold spores
- Dust mites
- Pet hair or dander
Why Does Hay Fever Cause a Rash?
If your rash is due to hay fever, it’s likely that your skin came in direct contact with an allergen like pollen. Maybe this happened when you were working in your garden or taking a hike through White Clay Creek Preserve.
It’s also possible for hay fever to worsen atopic dermatitis. This is a condition that causes patches of dry, inflamed, and itchy skin and is most common in children.
Other Potential Causes of Rash
Just because you spent time outdoors before developing a rash doesn’t mean hay fever is necessarily to blame. Other common causes include:
- Poison oak, ivy or sumac
- Other poisonous plants
- Reaction to lotion or cosmetics
Preventing Hay Fever Symptoms
There are several at-home methods you can try to prevent rashes and other symptoms of hay fever. These include:
- Avoid going outside when pollen counts are high.
- Keep the windows of your car and home closed.
- Change and wash any clothes that you wore outside and shower to remove any pollen in your hair or on your body.
- Don’t hang clothes out to dry
- Wash your bedding weekly in hot water
- Use a dehumidifier to keep humidity in your home low
- Try using over the counter antihistamines, nasal sprays, and/or creams
Visit an Allergist to Determine the Cause of Rash
If you believe your rash is caused by hay fever, it might be wise to visit an allergist. They can help confirm your allergy diagnosis and identify your specific triggers through allergy testing.
They can also prescribe stronger medications, inhalers, corticosteroids, or recommend immunotherapy to help control your symptoms and keep hay fever from negatively impacting your life.
If you have additional questions or wish to make an appointment with an expert allergist, call Pinnacle ENT today.