Managing Seasonal Allergies with Nonprescription Medications – Pharmacists
Allergic rhinitis is characterized by the presence of nasal congestion, rhinorrhea (e.g., runny nose or postnasal drip), sneezing, and itching of the nose, eyes, and palate. It is clinically classified according to symptom frequency and severity. Frequency is defined as episodic, intermittent, or persistent. Severity is defined as mild or moderate to severe. Allergic rhinitis cannot be cured but is managed with allergen avoidance measures, pharmacotherapy, and immunotherapy. Pharmacotherapy is targeted to patient-specific symptoms. Nonprescription pharmacologic options available for self-treatment include oral and intranasal antihistamines, intranasal corticosteroids, oral and intranasal decongestants, and intranasal mast cell stabilizers.