What you Should Know about Eye Allergies
A lot of people experience symptoms of seasonal allergies such as nasal congestion, sniffling, and sneezing and seek help for these. However, did you know that allergies also affect the eyes? Symptoms of eye allergy include red, itchy, and watery eyes. In fact, the eyelids can even swell due to eye allergies. Although allergies pose little threat to your eyesight, you may experience blurriness but this is just temporary. Everyone should know that eye allergies and other conditions and infections share the same symptoms. If you experience persistent symptoms visit your doctor as your condition may not have to do with seasonal allergies.
Causes of Eye Allergies
An allergy occurs as the immune system of the body reacts to a usually harmless allergen. As the allergen comes in contact with your eyes, some eye cells release substances like histamine to fight the allergen. Such reaction causes your eyes to become red, watery, and itchy. Aerial allergens cause a lot of eye allergies. They include dust, pollen from trees and grass, pet dander, smoke, and mold. Your eyes may also react to perfumes, drugs, and cosmetics. Preservative chemicals contained in prescribed eye drops or lubricating eye drops can also cause the eyes to have an allergic response. Moreover, a number of people inherit eye allergies from their parents.
Treatment for Eye Allergies
Eye allergies can be treated by reducing exposure to the allergens that trigger the allergic response. It is also smart to start asking yourself “How to find an eye doctor near me?” An optometrist should be able to give you the right eye care you need. They can often diagnose this kind of allergy based on your symptoms. But, to confirm the diagnosis, they will use a slit lamp to examine your eye’s front part. Such an examination can disclose the presence of swelling in the eyelid and conjunctiva as well as dilated blood vessels. Sometimes, an instrument may be used for scraping the conjunctiva to determine if there are cells that are involved in serious eye allergies.
Eye allergies can also be treated with both prescription and over-the-counter medicines. You can find non-prescription decongestants, artificial tears, and antihistamines to treat your short-term symptoms. Decongestant eye drops help in alleviating eye redness while artificial tears flush the allergens out of your eyes. Medicines prescribed by your eye doctor are quite effective in relieving symptoms. Antihistamines decrease redness, itching, and swelling. Also, mast cell stabilizers may also be used to prevent histamine releases, therefore, minimizing the symptoms.