Nasal & Sinus Center

What Triggers Vasomotor Rhinitis (Runny Nose)?


Irritants that can trigger vasomotor rhinitis include:
  • cigarette smoke
  • strong odors and fumes including perfume
  • hair spray and other cosmetics
  • forms of laundry detergents
  • cleaning solutions
  • pool chlorine
  • car exhaust
  • other air pollution
  • spices used in cooking
  • alcoholic beverages (particularly beer and wine)
  • aspirin
  • certain blood pressure medications

Some people are very sensitive to abrupt changes in weather or temperature. Skiers often develop a runny nose, but in some people any cold exposure may cause a runny nose. Others start sneezing when leaving a cold, air conditioned room. These agents are not allergens, do not induce formation of allergic antibodies and do not produce positive skin test reactions. Occasionally, one or two positive skin tests may be observed, but they do not match with the history and are not relevant or significant.

Irritants that can trigger vasomotor rhinitis include cigarette smoke, strong odors and fumes including perfume, hair spray, other cosmetics, forms of laundry detergents, cleaning solutions, pool chlorine, car exhaust and other air pollution. Other irritants are spices used in cooking, alcoholic beverages (particularly beer and wine), aspirin, and certain blood pressure medications. Some people are very sensitive to abrupt changes in weather or temperature. Skiers often develop a runny nose, but in some people any cold exposure may cause a runny nose. Others start sneezing when leaving a cold, air conditioned room. These agents are not allergens, do not induce formation of allergic antibodies and do not produce positive skin test reactions. Occasionally, one or two positive skin tests may be observed, but they do not match with the history and are not relevant or significant.