Eye Allergies

What You Need to Know about Eye Allergies

Eye allergies can cause a variety of discomforts. Fortunately, you're not alone in your battle against eye allergies, as allergic conjunctivitis is quite common. Allergic conjunctivitis is the medical term form the eyes reacting to a substance that irritates them, known as an allergen. The eyelids can become swollen, itchy, or red, and the eyes themselves can burn or tear up. The following guide, provided by the experts at the Eye and Contact Lens Center in Kirkland, offers the information you need to know about eye allergies, including symptoms, causes, and treatments. 

A woman with dry eye

Symptoms of Eye Allergies

You've probably experienced the symptoms of eye allergies at some point. These can include itchiness of the eyes or eyelids, redness, swelling, tearing, a burning sensation, or sensitivity to light. Experts emphasize the only way to truly know if you're experiencing an eye allergy is to visit your eye doctor and receive a comprehensive eye exam.

Causes of Eye Allergies

Eye allergies can be caused by any number of allergens, such as pollen, dust, cosmetics, or pet dander. These allergens are typically found in the air and can occur indoors or out. The cells within the eyes release chemicals when they come in contact with allergens, causing inflammation. This inflammation results in the burning, itching, tearing, watering, and other symptoms you feel.

A qualified optometrist will emphasize the importance of not rubbing your eyes to relieve pain. Rubbing can cause the cells to release more histamine and other chemicals, which results in even more itching or pain. Your eye doctor will also recommend removing contact lenses and avoiding use of eye makeup or creams.

Treatment of Eye Allergies

Proper treatment of eye allergies means a visit to your optometrist. Your eye doctor will administer an eye exam to check for swollen blood vessels and other signs of eye allergies. The key to treating eye allergies is to avoid and limit contact with the cause. This may involve a trip to an allergist who can help determine with substances are causing your eye allergies.

Many eye allergies are caused by pollen, so your eye doctor will likely suggest avoiding going outdoors when pollen counts are extreme. He or she may also suggest wearing your eye glasses or sunglasses whenever outdoors. Understanding what is causing your eye allergies and avoiding that substance is key to treating and avoiding the symptoms associated with them.

Arrange an Appointment with an Expert Optometrist Today

It's time to stop suffering from uncomfortable eye allergies. Contact us at Eye and Contact Lens Center in Kirkland, WA, to set up an eye exam appointment today. 

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