A new study has found that if children have allergies at an early age, they are more likely than other children to have problems with depression and anxiety later in life.
Researchers found that with an increase in the number of allergies, there is a corresponding increase in the internalizing behavior scores. Internalizing behaviors include disorders that develop when people do not seek help for problems, but keep their concerns to themselves, resulting in anxiety and depression.
“I think the surprising finding for us was that allergic rhinitis has the strongest association with abnormal anxiety/depression/internalizing scores compared to other allergic diseases,” said lead author Dr. Maya K. Nanda. She is with the division of Asthma, Allergy, and Immunology, at Children’s Mercy Hospital in Kansas City, Missouri.
Rhinitis includes symptoms of a runny nose, sneezing, and watering eyes, otherwise known as hay fever.