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Seasonal Allergies (Allergic Rhinitis)

Under a moderately high magnification of 888x, this scanning electron micrograph (SEM) revealed some of the morphologic ultrastructural surface details of one of the very small flower buds clustered in the center of a white dogwood flower, Cornus florida.

Courtesy of CDC/Janice Carr

More than 7 percent of adults and about 9 percent of children in the United States have allergic rhinitis (hay fever).

Bottom Line: Many complementary health approaches have been studied for allergic rhinitis. Some evidence indicates that rinsing the sinuses (for example, with a neti pot) and the herb butterbur may be helpful.


  • People can get infections if they use neti pots or other nasal rinsing devices improperly. Tap water is not safe for use as a nasal rinse unless it has been filtered, treated, or processed in specific ways.
  • It is unknown if butterbur is safe for long-term use.

If you are using or considering any complementary health approach for seasonal allergies, talk with your health care provider.

For more information on allergies, visit the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) Web site.

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This page last modified April 08, 2016