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Home » News and Events » A Guide to Dealing with the Effects of Eye Allergies

A Guide to Dealing with the Effects of Eye Allergies

If you are experiencing red eyes, itchy eyes or watery eyes it could be due to pollen-induced eye allergies. For some, spring is pollen season, which means uncomfortable symptoms such as itchy eyes, watery eyes or stinging, red eyes. Springtime eye allergies are caused by the release of tree and flower pollen into the atmosphere and can greatly inhibit quality of life for those that suffer from them.

What can you do to protect your eyes this pollen season? If at all feasible, try to reduce contact with allergens which means staying indoors, particularly on days with a high pollen count. Closing windows, using air conditioning and putting on full-coverage shades when going outside can also help to protect your eyes from irritants in the atmosphere. A HEPA (high efficiency particulate air) filter can be used filter irritants from the air inside your home or office.

Since most of us must leave the house on occasion, certain medications can treat symptoms such as itchy eyes, red eyes or watery eyes. Often times a basic lubricating eye drop will moisturize and alleviate itchy eyes or red eyes and cleanse the eye of irritants. Medicines containing antihistamines, decongestants or mast cell stabilizers will allay irritation of the eyes and treat other symptoms such as cold-like symptoms. Drops often work better than pills or liquid medications to treat eye symptoms.

Approximately 54 million people are affected by allergies, nearly 50% of which are allergic eye disease. Eye allergies can be hereditary and result from an over-sensitivity to a particle that has entered the eye even when it is not necessarily harmful. The eye releases histamines and other immune mediators which result in excessive tears, itching, burning, redness and irritation.

When your eyes are irritated, don't rub them. This will only worsen the irritation. Due to the fact that often products that work to alleviate symptoms do need a prescription, if over-the-counter medications are not working for you, book a visit with your eye doctor.