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Pregnancy Rhinitis- Why Do Some Women Sneeze During Pregnancy?

Are you feeling a bit stuffed up lately? Or are you constantly blowing your nose? If your answer is yes, then don’t worry! You are not the only one. Many women during pregnancy experience coughing, nasal congestion and sneezing. This is a very common ailment known as ‘pregnancy rhinitis’. It can really make your life miserable, making it difficult to breath or sleep comfortably.

What Exactly Pregnancy Rhinitis Means?

Pregnancy rhinitis occurs when your nostrils become inflamed and irritated during pregnancy. The final result is that you experience a runny nose, nasal congestion and sneezing. It is very similar to allergic rhinitis. But it is not caused by any environmental toxins or allergens. It lasts for minimum of six weeks and can occur at anytime throughout your pregnancy. But it usually occurs in the first trimester.

Is Pregnancy Rhinitis Common?

Pregnancy rhinitis is one of the most common discomforts found during pregnancy. Like backaches and morning sickness, many pregnant women experience pregnancy rhinitis annually. It is observed that 20% and 30% of all pregnant women will suffer from this condition to some extent.

Symptoms Of Pregnancy Rhinitis

The symptoms vary from women to women. However, they include:

  • sneezing
  • congestion
  • nasal itching
  • persistent coughing

Some women may also experience headaches alongwith nasal congestion.

Causes Of Pregnancy Rhinitis

Changes in the hormonal levels is believed to be the main cause of pregnancy rhinitis. Although the exact cause is still unknown. The placenta produces a large amounts of

estrogen

during pregnancy. It is known to induce mucus production and may cause thickening of mucus. It also causes turbinates inside the nose to become swollen, which can result in improper breathing. Rhinitis cases has been observed in women taking the hormone replacement therapy and birth control pill.

Treatment For Pregnancy Rhinitis

Pregnancy Rhinitis is not dangerous for you or your baby. However, it can make your life miserable. It affects your quality of sleep, which can make you fatigued and tired. It also increases your chances of developing a chronic sinusitis.

The different methods of treatment are as following:

  • Antihistamines
  • Nasal saline irrigation
  • Oral decongestants

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