July 27, 2022

Can Allergies Cause a Fever? - Here’s What You Should Know

Key Takeaways

  • Allergies arise when your immune system reacts to a foreign substance and releases antibodies to counteract its presence. 
  • Allergies cause a wide range of symptoms; from mild symptoms like a runny nose to life-threatening reactions like anaphylactic shock. 
  • Allergies cannot cause a fever, but a fever in conjunction with other symptoms may indicate a sinus infection. 
  • An at-home blood allergy test can identify if you have an allergy.

Allergy season can be a confusing time. Is your stuffy nose the result of allergies or a common cold? Are your eyes itchy from pollen or cutting onions? Is your fever a flu symptom or something worse?

Of course, this raises an excellent question: Can allergies cause a fever, or is it something completely unrelated?

Here’s what you should know about whether allergies can cause a fever and how to get tested at home.

What are allergies?

Allergies can come in many forms, from those that cause a life-threatening reaction to medications, such as penicillin, to those that cause a reaction to a particular food, such as nuts and shellfish or by animal dander and mites. Some people are allergic to insect stings, while others suffer from allergic rhinitis caused by plant pollens.

If you are living with an allergy, you know how difficult it can make life, particularly if the allergen is something that you may often come into contact with.

Allergies arise when your immune system reacts to a foreign substance. Your body identifies the allergen as harmful, even though it is not, and produces antibodies to counteract its presence. Consequently, each time you come into contact with the allergen, your immune system can cause one or more of the following symptoms:

  • Hives or other skin condition, like dermatitis or eczema
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Sneezing
  • Headache
  • Cough
  • Sore throat
  • Swollen lips, face, or tongue
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Sore, watery eyes

The severity of an allergy varies from individual to individual. In some cases, allergies can be life-threatening if not treated quickly, leading to anaphylactic shock. Anaphylaxis can be fatal. Although in many cases, allergies cannot be cured, they can be treated with medications.

Can allergies cause a fever?

Allergies can cause a wide range of symptoms; from mild symptoms like a runny nose to more severe and life-threatening reactions like anaphylactic shock. However, allergies cannot cause a fever.

If you are experiencing a fever in conjunction with other symptoms like a runny or stuffy nose, then the likely cause is a sinus infection.

The good news is that most sinus infections go away without the need for medical treatment. The CDC recommends a few helpful home remedies that can help manage the pain and discomfort of a sinus infection, including:

  • Applying a warm compress to the sinuses
  • Using a nasal wash or sinus rinse like saline spray or a neti pot
  • Breath in stream from a bowl of hot water or shower

If the sinus infection causes severe conditions like severe headache or facial pain, lasts more than 10 days without improvement, or the fever lasts longer than 3-4 days, it’s recommended that you should seek medical care.

Allergies can cause a wide range of symptoms; from mild symptoms like a runny nose to more severe and life-threatening reactions like anaphylactic shock. However, allergies cannot cause a fever.

Does hay fever cause a fever?

Despite the name, hay fever does not cause a fever and isn’t even a reaction to hay (confusing, right?).

Hay fever, or allergic rhinitis, is a common allergy that causes similar symptoms to other allergic reactions, including runny or stuffy nose, itchy mouth, eyes, or skin.

For many people, hay fever is seasonal and caused by sensitivity to airborne mold spores and pollens from grasses, trees, and other plants. Others experience symptoms year-round from environmental allergies like dust mites, pet dander, and cockroaches.

Fun fact: “Hay fever” grew into a common household term based on an article published in 1819 by a London-based doctor named John Bostock. In the article, Dr. Bostock, who suffered from seasonal allergies, concluded that his symptoms were caused by, “the effluvium (smell) from new hay.”

Thus, a new and popular term entered the lexicon.

How to test for allergies at home

If you are experiencing any of the common allergies symptoms above, or if you have persistent lung, skin, or digestive problems, then it might be time to explore allergy testing. Fortunately, an allergy blood test can be delivered right to your door with mobile phlebotomy services like Getlabs.

You can easily book an appointment online and Getlabs will send a local phlebotomist to visit your home and collect your sample. They will then take your sample to a nearby lab for analysis. All you need to do is relax and wait for your results.

If you want to learn more about Getlabs, simply visit our FAQ section. To dive deeper into what an allergy blood test entails and what the test results mean, we covered the topic in depth here: Allergy Blood Tests - What It Is & What You Need to Know.

Book an Appointment

Getlabs delivers healthcare to you. Our specialists come to you to collect your labs and deliver them to Labcorp and Quest for testing. We’re available same-day, nationwide.

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