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Sneezing, or sternutation, is the act of forcibly expelling air and small droplets of water through the nose and mouth following irritation of the skin lining the nose. The reflex to sneeze can be caused by many stimuli including looking into bright light (photic sneeze reflex) or sniffing pepper. It is a common symptom of many diseases that affect the upper respiratory tract, such as allergies, the common cold, and influenza. The latter two take advantage of sneezing to spread the disease.

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