Objective: To evaluate the association between AR and mental health status in the general adult Korean population. Also, to investigate relative burden of AR on mental health using Allergic Rhinitis and Its Impact on Asthma (ARIA) classification
Methods: A cross-sectional study was performed by using data of 11,154 individuals 19 years old or older, collected through the Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey from 2011 to 2012. Univariate analysis was conducted on Healthy, AR groups with weighted prevalence of demographic characteristics, socioeconomic status and comobid diseases. Subanalysis classifying AR severity according to the ARIA classification was carried out to evaluate the relationship of AR severity with mental health. The odds ratios (ORs) for each components representing mental health status were estimated by multiple logistic regression analyses with confounder adjustment.
Results: Univariate analysis with Chi-square test after adjusting age, sex, BMI, smoking status, alcohol use status and exercise status, components representing mental health status showed linear trend with the severity of AR according to ARIA classification. Stress, depressive mood, suicidal thought, psychological consultation factors were correlated with AR after adjusting demographic characteristics, socioeconomic status. Even after adjusting comorbid allergic diseases the correlation remained significant with stress, depressive mood, psychological consultation factors (OR [95% CI]; 1.227 [1.042, 1.445], 1.368 [1.095, 1.71], 1.804 [1.096, 2.969]).
Conclusion: Patients with AR appear to be at a higher risk for mental health disorders in the general adult Korean population. Moreover, persistent or severe AR was correlated with poor mental health. Therefore, better control of AR may be conducive to better mental health and more attention should be paid to the psychological status of AR patients.