If you have hay fever, you'll feel the symptoms immediately after exposure to an allergen. Symptoms include:

  • Sneezing
  • Itchy nose, roof of the mouth, throat, eyes, and ears
  • Runny nose (with clear secretions)
  • Congestion
  • Sinus pressure
  • Watery eyes

Although hay fever symptoms are uncomfortable and can decrease your quality of life, they are almost never dangerous. Nevertheless, you may want to see a doctor such as an allergy specialist if your symptoms continue for long periods of time and are troublesome, especially if over-the-counter medications aren't working for you. Since hay fever symptoms look a lot like a cold, it may be useful to consult a doctor or allergist to determine what is causing your symptoms. If a cold lasts longer than a week, chances are it could be hay fever.

Learn more:

Preventing hay fever symptoms.

Treating seasonal allergies.