Hay fever is another name for allergic rhinitis, or allergies to environmental triggers such as mold, dust mites, pet dander and pollen. Although the term "hay fever" has been used for centuries, running a fever is not a symptom of the condition. Rather, it is thought that the word "fever" might refer to a general feeling of being ill or unwell.
Actual symptoms of hay fever include puffy, itchy, watery eyes, runny nose, nasal congestion, sneezing, cough, sinus pressure, facial pain, allergic shiners (swollen, blue skin under the eyes), itchy mouth, nose or throat and decreased sense of taste or smell. Hay fever sufferers may experience some or all of these symptoms, but they will begin immediately after exposure to the allergen or allergens.
In addition to the regular symptoms of hay fever, there are complications that may arise as a result of the condition. These include difficulty sleeping, worsening asthma symptoms, sinusitis, ear infections (especially in children) and oral allergy syndrome (OAS). OAS may cause your seasonal allergy symptoms to worsen after you eat certain fresh fruits, vegetables. Common symptoms of OAS include itchiness and swelling of the throat and mouth.
Because hay fever sufferers do not run a fever as part of the condition, a more accurate way to refer to the disease is by its medical name, "allergic rhinitis," which means "inflammation of the nose caused by allergies."
If you have some or all of symptoms of allergic rhinitis, you should see an allergist to be properly diagnosed. You should stay away from the triggers that cause your symptoms, keep windows closed during the worst seasons for your allergies and run the air conditioner on re-circulate so that air full of allergens is not brought into your home, office or car. Your allergist may prescribe medication for you or even suggest you take steroid injections to alleviate your symptoms.