All about each symptom of menopause
women going through menopause
Reader Comments

We at believe in an ongoing dialogue with our readers and value their feedback.

To leave a comment, concern, tip, or experience about allergies, please leave your comment below.


Hormones and the body's immune system are interconnected. It's no wonder, then, that when the female body goes through hormonal transitions - such as during puberty, menstruation, pregnancy, and menopause - allergies can become worse or newly appear.

As women approach menopause, many begin to experience a heightened sensitivity to allergies that previously had only subtle effects, or new allergies might spring up seemingly out of nowhere. Therefore, it's important to understand allergies in relation to menopause, their causes, and different the treatment options available. Continue reading to learn all about allergies during menopause.

About Allergies

Allergies are present when a person's immune system reacts abnormally to foreign substances that are typically harmless to most people. Perhaps the most common example is an allergy to pollen. In this case, pollen would be known as an allergen.

Common Allergy Symptoms

When a person is allergic to something, the immune system mistakenly identifies the substance as harmful, and in an attempt to protect the body, produces a type of antibody at the source of an allergic reaction, known as an IgE antibody. These antibodies spark chemical reactions in certain cells, namely the release histamine into the bloodstream. Many people, especially allergy sufferers, are familiar with histamine, which is the compound that inflames tissue and is responsible for runny noses, sneezing, rashes, and other symptoms of an allergic reaction. For those with allergies, histamine becomes part of an allergic response that can range from relatively minor symptoms to life-threatening, full-body reactions.

Symptoms of allergies

Because there is such a wide array of allergies different people can have, the symptoms vary as well. Allergy symptoms can range from mild to severe, and some allergies can cause multiple symptoms in an individual. An extremely severe allergic reaction is called anaphylaxis. Although anaphylaxis is rare, if not treated, it can cause very serious health concerns or even death. Below are allergy symptoms, separated into mild, moderate, and severe.

Mild Symptoms

  • Rash
  • Itchy, watery eyes
  • Congestion
  • Sneezing

Rash is considered as a mild symptom of allergy

Moderate Symptoms

  • Itchiness
  • Difficulty breathing

Woman with difficulty breathing because allergy

Severe Symptoms

  • Varying degrees of swelling that can make breathing and swallowing difficult
  • Abdominal pain
  • Cramps
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Mental confusion or dizziness

Types of allergies

Many people have allergies to animal fur and dander, pollen, and certain types of food. However, virtually anything can trigger an allergic reaction. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recognizes eight foods or food compounds as being common allergens: peanuts, tree nuts, eggs, milk, shellfish, fish, wheat, soy, and sulphites (compounds often found in flavors and colors in foods). The world is filled with potential allergens, which create various types of allergies. Those common types are the following:

  • Did You Know?

    One recent study determined that perimenopausal women who'd not had their periods for six months experienced an 80% increase in respiratory symptoms associated with asthma compared to those who were menstruating regularly.

    Hay fever. This is the most common allergic reaction and refers to seasonal nasal symptoms that are due to pollen.

  • Asthma. This is a breathing problem that results from the inflammation and spasm of the lungs' air passages.

  • Allergic eyes. This is inflammation of the tissue layers that cover the surface of the eyeball and the underside of the eyelid.

  • Allergic eczema. This is an allergic rash that is usually not caused by skin contact with an allergen. It's usually associated with hay fever of asthma.

  • Hives. These are skin reactions that appear as itchy swellings and can occur on any part of the body.

  • Allergic shock. This is a life-threatening allergic reaction that can affect a number of organs at the same time. This response typically occurs when a food allergen is eaten or when a sufferer is stung by a bee.

Continue reading below to find out more information about the causes of allergies during menopause.

Are Asthma in Adults and Allergies Related?

Adult-onset asthma is quite common among women. About half of its cases are triggered by allergies to environmental allergens, such as pollen, dust mites, and more. Its management should focus on long-term prevention of asthma attacks and the reduction of lung inflammation.

Are Allergies and Fatigue Symptoms of Menopause?

Allergies and fatigue are symptoms of menopause. While most allergies develop during childhood, they occasionally can come about during menopause due to hormone fluctuations. Getting an allergy test can help you determine what you are allergic to, in order to avoid those allergens and maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Causes of Allergies

Allergies stem from reactions the immune system provokes in the body. Different cells in the immune system are influenced by estrogen. Whenever hormonal fluctuations occur, the immune system can be impacted and make a woman more prone to allergies.

Did You Know?

If neither parent has allergies, the chance that a child will have allergies is about 12%. If one parent is allergic, the risk increases to 30 - 50%, and if both are allergic, the risk is greater than 60 - 80%.

As menopause approaches, a woman's body prepares to cease menstruation permanently. In order to prepare for this, hormone production drastically decreases.

Hormone level fluctuations can have a significant impact on both the incidence of allergies and the severity of allergy symptoms. Although the mechanisms are not always well understood, changes in hormone levels are frequently associated with the development of allergies or changes in allergy symptoms, particularly hay fever, asthma, and dermatitis.

Triggers of allergies

Along with hormonal causes of allergies, other factors can increase susceptibility to allergies or intensify symptoms. Some of those factors include diet, certain medications, and stress.

Continue reading to learn more about the treatment options available for allergies during menopause.

5 Uncommon Causes of Allergies

The causes of allergies are numerous, but some are more common than others. This article focuses on the causes of allergies that are reasonably uncommon, so they could possibly be leading to your allergic reactions without your knowledge. Fortunately, once the allergen is pinpointed, it is reasonably easy to avoid.

4 Common Triggers of Skin Allergies during Menopause

Skin allergies are one of the many symptoms of the menopause transition. However, there are a number of tips and tricks you can use to reduce irritation and inflammation of skin. Click on the following link to learn more about the causes and treatments for skin allergies.

Allergies Treatments

Fortunately, there are numerous treatment options available for women who are suffering from allergies. When managing symptoms, it is important to begin with the least risky treatment options first.

This means that lifestyle changes are the best place to begin to search for alleviation from allergies. For instance, try shutting the windows of the house to prevent pollen from entering, or get an air filter that can drastically reduce allergic particles in the air. These are just a couple examples of altering habits around the house to stymie allergies.

Alternative medicine is a good option to treat allergies

Typically, combining lifestyle changes and alternative medicine will produce the best outcome. Alternative medicine can be different herbs and supplements or even techniques like aromatherapy, though some methods are more effective than others. When seeking out alternative medicine, keep in mind that allergies are associated with hormones and look for a treatment that balances hormone levels, as this will go a long way in subduing allergic reactions.

Finally, if symptoms still persist even after implementing the first two approaches, there are multitudes of different medications or desensitization treatment that can be explored. For instance, allergy shots, prescribed drugs, or over-the-counter medications can bring relief. However, this approach generally comes with the most side effects.

Click on the following link to learn specific treatments for allergies, which begin with lifestyle changes, move onto alternative medicine, and finally, if those options don't seem to help, medications. The most effective treatments for allergies typically combine lifestyle changes and alternative medicine.

8 Common Food Allergies

Food allergies are unpleasant at best and at worst can even be dangerous. This article aims to serve as a guide to the most common food allergies and provides information about who is most likely to get them and what kind of reactions they are likely to elicit.

Coping with Food Allergies at Restaurants

Food allergies can be hard to cope with when visiting a restaurant. However, there are ways to deal with it. This article describes five things you can do to ensure a smoother experiencing when dining out, including researching the restaurant, asking questions, and avoiding prime time.

  • Bonds, R.S. & Midoro-Horiuti, T. (2013). Estrogen effects in allergy and asthma. Current Opinion in Allergy and Clinical Immunology, 13(1), 92-99. Retrieved from
  • Chad, Z. (2001). Allergies in children. Paediatrics & Child Health, 6(8), 555-566. Retrieved from
  • National Institutes of Health. (2014). Allergies. Retrieved April 25, 2016, from

General articles

Updated on Apr 20, 2016
3 Helpful Tips to Prevent Eye Allergies
If you suffer from eye allergies, you will understand how painful and distressing they can be, and you are probably seeking some safe and effective solutions. This article discusses eye allergies in more detail and gives you ideas on how you can prevent them.
Updated on Apr 01, 2016
Nasal Sprays for Allergies: Are They the Solution?
Nasal allergies have a variety of symptoms, and to control these, many sufferers reach for products like decongestant nasal sprays. This article discusses whether or not nasal sprays for allergies really are the best solution, focusing on the pros and cons and offering alternative solutions.
Updated on Dec 15, 2015
Most Common Symptoms of Allergies and Fatigue
Allergies can cause feelings of fatigue, so it is possible for the two conditions to come together. However, more commonly, they do not and have their own range of symptoms. This article looks at the most common symptoms of allergies and fatigue, as well as their respective causes.
Updated on Sep 15, 2015
Allergies and Fatigue: Are They Related?
Fatigue is a debilitating condition with a number of different causes, but allergies are often given the blame due to allergens' effect on the immune system. This article looks at what the science says to determine whether or not there is a strong link between overwhelming tiredness and allergic reactions.
Updated on Mar 04, 2015
4 Signs of Allergies
Itchy throat, watery eyes, constant sneezing - sound familiar? If you suffer from any of those symptoms, you may have allergies. If you can eliminate certain foods from your diet or stay away from certain animals or trees, life will be a whole lot more enjoyable!Read for further information on how to deal with this menopausal symptom.