Allergy season is upon us and reports show we are in for a pretty severe allergy season. With over 50 million people in the United States affected by seasonal allergies, chances are you may be experiencing some irritation due to the pollen this season. Red, itchy, watery eyes are caused by the same irritants that cause your sneezing and runny nose and can be very uncomfortable. In some cases they can play a role in conjunctivitis and other eye infections. Our doctors are sharing a few tips to keep in mind this allergy season including:
- Avoid Allergens
- Wear Glasses and Avoid Contacts
- Use Eye Drops or a warm compress
- Consider Prescription Medication
While you won’t be able to completely avoid allergens, limiting your exposure to them as much as possible will certainly help alleviate some irritation. On days with a high pollen count, try to stay inside with the windows closed. Use air conditioning to filter the air while staying cool. If you must go outside, try wearing sunglasses that wrap around your face to shield your eyes from allergies.
Wear Glasses and Avoid Contacts
Contacts can actually attract and accumulate airborne allergens which can irritate eyes. By opting to wear glasses during allergy season, you can avoid the buildup of allergens on your contact lenses causing you to have less eye irritation.
Over-the-counter lubricating eye drops can help relieve some of the redness and irritation caused by allergies. These should work well if you have relatively mild allergies and irritation. However, if you have more severe allergies, prescription medication may be necessary. Make sure to ask your eye doctor which over-the-counter brand they recommend for the most relief.
A warm compress can help provide relief from seasonal allergies as well. Apply the warm compress to your closed eyelids for 5-10 minutes, then rub closed eyelids up and down and side to side with fingers. Finally, use a cloth with a drop of diluted cleansing solution (like baby shampoo) to wipe away any additional buildup and gunge.
For more severe allergies that over-the-counter eye drops are ineffective in relieving, prescription eye drops and oral medications may be needed. These may include:
- Mast cell stabilizers
- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs
If you are experiencing irritated eyes due to seasonal allergies and are having problems finding relief, contact us today at (201) 384-7333 to schedule an eye exam to see if you may need prescription medication to help relieve your allergy symptoms.Leave a reply →