Allergies can be a major source of fatigue, leaving you feeling exhausted and confused during the day. Both seasonal and year-round allergies can cause fatigue, and getting tested by a board-certified allergist is the first step to finding relief. Allergies can indirectly cause fatigue by hindering your ability to sleep, such as slight nasal obstruction or wheezing that may prevent you from sleeping or wake you up startled with bouts of coughing. Congestion can also create a lot of pressure in your upper airway, making you feel tired.
A key sign that your fatigue may be caused by allergies is if you have other allergy symptoms at the same time, such as itchy eyes, ears, nose and throat, sneezing, coughing, runny nose, teary eyes, mild wheezing or whistling when breathing, and rashes or hives. Respiratory infections like the common cold or Covid-19 can also cause fatigue, along with other common allergy symptoms like coughing, headache, and stuffy or runny nose. However, the main symptoms that would distinguish allergies from these other conditions are itchy nose, eyes, and ears. If you have an upper respiratory infection, you may also have a fever, sore throat, swollen glands and muscle aches that aren't really related to allergies. The duration of your symptoms may be another indication of what you have. Oral allergy medications are effective in relieving symptoms such as congestion, itching and sneezing but a major disadvantage is that many cause drowsiness.
First-generation oral antihistamines like Benadryl (diphenhydramine) or Atarax (hydroxyzine) are more likely than second-generation antihistamines like Claritin (loratadine) or Zyrtec (cetirizine) to cause drowsiness. Even those labeled “not sleepy” can cause some people to feel sleepy. Tirumalasetty said so it may take a bit of trial and error to find the allergy medication that works for you. Another key strategy for minimizing allergy symptoms is to “protect your home from allergies”. If you're allergic to dust mites, you can use hypoallergenic bedding or “allergy-proof” mattress covers, pillows and duvets that prevent dust mites from entering the bedding and help minimize symptoms.
To prevent dust and other possible irritants from accumulating, Dr. Tirumalasetty advised that they make sure to “wash the sheets once a week”. Try to avoid any animals you may be allergic to and if you have seasonal allergies showering after being outdoors and cleaning used clothing will help prevent too much pollen or other allergens from entering your home. It may not seem obvious but allergies can cause severe fatigue in addition to other frustrating symptoms. They can drain your body's energy and prevent you from sleeping well at night leaving you feeling exhausted and confused during the day.
Constantly feeling fatigued from fighting allergies can greatly affect your quality of life. If you're tired of allergies making you feel tired see an expert otolaryngologist who can help you get back to having restful nights and days with a clear mind. There are several over-the-counter (OTC) medications that can help control allergy symptoms including fatigue. Allergy vaccines also called immunotherapy work by introducing a very small amount of the substance that causes allergies into the body. Allergy drops are just as effective but can be easily made from home with daily drops under your tongue making them one of the best ways to control and eliminate allergies that cause fatigue. A primary care provider can help you with mild or moderate allergy symptoms but if allergic reactions interfere with your daily life you may want to see an allergist who specializes in diagnosing and treating allergies.
They can also perform an accurate allergy test to find out exactly what allergies you have and how severe each one may be. If over-the-counter allergy medications don't help enough your doctor may recommend allergy shots or regular injections that can help reduce allergic reactions. If allergies are really the source of your fatigue treating them is the best way to treat fatigue. While mild or moderate allergies aren't considered a medical emergency an allergy can cause a serious reaction called anaphylaxis. However instead of the allergy itself causing fatigue there are a number of allergy symptoms that could leave you feeling exhausted. After performing an allergy test in the office or at home to diagnose your allergies consider what allergy treatment option might work best to treat fatigue and eliminate other symptoms.