Although most people don’t think of winter as an allergy season, indoor allergies can be particularly bad as people lock up their homes to avoid the cold temperatures.
The two main indoor allergies people suffer from are animal dander and dust mites, said Dr. Ronald Ragotzy, an allergist and immunologist at Mercy Clinic East in Janesville, Mercy Beloit Medical Center and Mercy Walworth Hospital and Medical Center in Lake Geneva.
Since viruses are quite common this season, it can be hard to distinguish between the common cold or flu and an allergy, Ragotzy said.
In general, symptoms of dust mite allergies include congestion and recurrent sinus blockage.
Dust mites can cause a person to be more susceptible to viruses. Symptoms of animal allergies include itchy eyes and nose, runny nose and sneezing.
For those wondering if they might have a virus or if their symptoms are caused by an allergen, Ragotzy said allergies will never produce a fever.
â€œThe rule of thumb is if you’re sicker than everyone else around you, you might have allergies,â€ Ragotzy said.
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