Does Drinking Alcohol Cause Nasal Congestion? HowStuffWorks

Ok, so now that we’ve answered the question – why does my nose get stuffy when I drink? – it’s time to determine whether this is really a cause for concern or not. This is especially true if you suffer the occasional 2-day hangover. This effect can also make you feel hot when you drink alcohol, but it can also lead to short-term nasal congestion. The blood vessels around your nasal cavity can expand, making it a bit more difficult to breathe normally. If you find that certain foods make you sneeze, such as strawberries or shellfish, try avoiding them before you drink.

However, for a severe skin reaction, weak pulse, vomiting or trouble breathing, seek emergency help right away, as you could be having an anaphylactic reaction. Some people experience allergy-like reactions to sulfites. Some types of sulfites might also trigger an asthmatic attack if you have asthma. But experts do know that nonallergic rhinitis happens when blood vessels in the nose expand. These blood vessels fill the tissue that lines the inside of the nose.

Questions to ask yourself about your alcohol use

An allergist is a special type of doctor that focuses on allergic conditions. Having a mild intolerance to alcohol or something else in alcoholic beverages might not require a trip to a doctor. Simply avoid alcohol, limit how much you drink or avoid certain types of alcoholic beverages. You can also get allergy testing to check whether you have a true allergy to alcohol. Allergy testing can also tell you if you have an allergy to another component of alcoholic beverages like wheat, grapes, or barley. It’s possible to be allergic to alcohol, but it’s not very common.

alcohol makes me sneeze

When your alcohol use, including being sick from drinking, often prevents you from keeping up with responsibilities at home, work, or school, it’s a problem. While an intolerance can lead to uncomfortable TOP 10 BEST Sober Houses in Boston, MA January 2024 symptoms, with an allergy, there is a chance anaphylaxis, a life-threatening reaction, can occur. New research suggests the risks of even moderate or light drinking may outweigh the benefits.

Why Do I Get Stuffy Nose & Nasal Congestion After Drinking Alcohol?

Maybe you’ve been concerned enough that you’ve already thought about or actually tried to cut down on your drinking — and it didn’t happen. Alcohol masks unhappy emotions, so those feelings may come back when you quit drinking, making it harder to stick to your goal. If you try to abstain, but then obsess over alcohol or switch to another drug or behavior, that’s a red flag. Do you continue to drink even though you know it’s causing health problems, or making those problems worse?

alcohol makes me sneeze

In some people, intolerance or allergy to alcohol can also result in uncomfortable or even dangerous symptoms. This article discusses allergies to alcohol, symptoms, triggers, tests, and treatment options. If you find out that you’re allergic to one ingredient, you might still be able to enjoy beer.

You Spend a Lot of Time on Drinking

One 2005 study surveyed people who experience upper airway symptoms in response to alcohol. Reported symptoms included nasal congestion and sneezing. However, some people with Hodgkin lymphoma experience pain in their lymph nodes after consuming alcohol. The amounts of histamine vary between wines, but generally, there is more histamine in red than white wine.

alcohol makes me sneeze

Specifically, genetic changes that make your corresponding ALDH2 enzyme bad at its job. What’s more is that this genetic variation can be passed down from parent to child, making alcohol intolerance an inherited condition. And since it affects your genes, once you inherit it, you’re stuck with it. But alcohol tolerance is more complicated than just being “a lightweight” or not.

If you might have an intolerance instead of an allergy, you could see a gastroenterologist, a healthcare provider specializing in digestive issues. People with histamine intolerance have decreased or inhibited enzymes that break down histamine from food. Alcohol intolerance occurs when your body doesn’t have the proper enzymes to break down (metabolize) the toxins in alcohol. This is caused by inherited (genetic) traits most often found in Asians. Also, if your symptoms seem to be linked to an allergy or a medication you’re taking, see your doctor.

  • While rare, yeast allergy can cause an allergic reaction in some people.
  • When you have a drinking problem, your brain reacts to these triggers differently than a social drinker’s does.
  • Leah’s sneezing symptoms may be one-of-a-kind, but plenty of adults occasionally find themselves with pounding headaches and congestion from a glass.
  • Are some allergens shared between wine and other foods or products?