Allergy: A Risk Factor for Suicide?

I lost a close friend of mine last week to suicide. He seemed to have it all and everybody was surprised by his actions. Since pollen counts are at all time highs right now I think it's important to read the research on Allergies and Suicide again.

In a recent peer reviewed article published by the National Institute for Health, the authors found that there is a correlation between suicide and Allergic Rhinitis. Allergic Rhinitis is the scientific name for seasonal allergies or Hay Fever. The authors are Teodor T. Postolache, MD, Hirsh Komarow, MD, and Leonardo H. Tonelli, PhD. Here is a link to their article.

For years suicide researchers have investigated the spike in spring time suicides with a smaller spike in late summer and early fall. There is a similar pattern of suicides in the southern hemisphere relating to their spring and summers.

Research now shows that the increase in pollen count directly correlates to the increase in suicide. The NIH now gives the following guidance to doctors: "Clinicians should actively inquire to diagnose allergy in patients with depression and depression in patients with allergy."

One study in a student population shows that seasonality of mood is directly related to sensitivity to pollen counts. Another study shows that changes in allergy symptoms are directly related to changes in depression scores and changes in anxiety scores.

Basically, Cytokines are found in the brains of suicide victims and Allergen Exposure leads to Cytokines.

Triple vulnerability for suicide, mood disorders, and allergic sensitization with an environmental trigger (allergen)

The authors suggest that over the counter anti-histamines can help for up to 10 days at a time. If your allergy symptoms last longer consider Immunotherapy or allergy shots.

If you know somebody with Allergies, get them screened for depression, and if you know somebody with depression, get them screened for allergies.

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