Sniffles and itchy eyes in winter? It could be allergies.

Bad news, allergy sufferers — winter won’t necessarily give you a break.

“There are what we call perennial allergens that never really go away,” said Dr. Anne Ellis, professor and chair of the division of allergy and immunology at Queen’s University.

“Things like house dust mites, which are microscopic spider-like insects that live in our mattress and pillow, certain moulds can live indoors in homes, and obviously if people have pets — cats and dogs — they usually allow them in the house and they’re not leaving, because it’s wintertime.”

Mice also like to come inside during the winter, said Dr. Paul Keith, an associate professor in McMaster University’s division of allergy and clinical immunology. These rodents can also be an allergy trigger for many people, he said, if they get into the house.

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