This time of year, when the temperature ticks up and the air is filled with pollen, it’s natural to assume your runny nose, watery eyes, or sinus pressure are reactions to seasonal allergens. But some symptoms people mistake for run-of-the-mill allergies could actually be signs of other health issues—some of them quite serious.
Especially if your allergy medications aren’t doing any good, and if you don’t notice the symptoms abating when you head indoors, you may want to reconsider your self-diagnoses, says Brett Comer, MD, a surgeon and assistant professor at the University of Kentucky.
Paying close attention to your symptoms can help you tell if you’re dealing with something other than allergies. Here’s what to watch out for:
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