Eye allergies, which are also known as allergic conjunctivitis, occur when the eyes come into contact with an allergen and produce a compound called histamine to fight it off. Unlike other forms of conjunctivitis, allergic conjunctivitis cannot spread, as the reaction is an endemic and natural response to a perceived foreign agent within the body.
Red, swollen, or itchy eyes.
Burning or teary eyes.
Sensitivity to light.
The best way to avoid the symptoms of eye allergies is to avoid their causes—allergens. This means you may, if you are unaware, need to get tested for what you’re allergic to and what would cause allergic conjunctivitis. For example, those who have a sensitivity to pollen may want to keep their windows shut during the initial beginning of spring, as the pollen count is incredibly high at this time of year during the mid-morning and early evening.
Other than purely preventative measures, there are a number of medications—such as artificial tears, eyedrops, decongestants, oral antihistamines, corticosteroids, and mast-cell stabilizers—that can help treat and relieve eye allergies.
One final step could be immunotherapy shots. This procedure is designed to gradually acclimate your body to allergens, effectively and slowly making it immune to any catalyzing agents that could potentially set off an allergic reaction. Reach out to your local optometrist if you’re looking for further advice and guidance.
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