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Wheezing is an uncomfortable respiratory symptom with many possible causes. Described as a jagged, high-pitched whistling sound, wheezing makes it hard to take a deep breath, which can create anxiety that makes the situation worse. Though it can be frightening, there is usually a simple explanation for wheezing.

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1. Allergies

Pet dander, pollen, and even certain insects can trigger allergy-induced wheezing. When these particles are carried around by the wind, they can settle in the nose and mouth. When the body detects them, it sends out histamines to combat the allergens. This process increases inflammation in the bronchial tubes, which induces shortness of breath and wheezing along with coughing and sneezing.

allergies coughing wheezing histamines frantic00 / Getty Images
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