sneeze

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sneeze,

involuntary violent expiration of air through the nose and mouth. It results from stimulation of the nervous system in the nose, causing sudden contraction of the muscles of expiration. The stimulus can include any irritating factor in the nose—inflammation of the tissues as the result of a cold or infection, allergic irritants (hay feverhay fever,
seasonal allergy causing inflammation of the mucous membranes of the nose and eyes. It is characterized by itching about the eyes and nose, sneezing, a profuse watery nasal discharge, and tearing of the eyes.
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), or irritating substances such as dust or pollutants in the air. An occasional sneeze usually has little significance. Repeated sneezing indicates that some condition of the nose or in the immediate atmosphere requires attention.
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sneeze

[snēz]
(physiology)
A sudden, noisy, spasmodic expiration through the mouth and nose.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.