As the end of summer approaches, many people start to suffer from seasonal eye allergies such as hay fever. In addition to nasal symptoms such as sneezing and congestion, eye allergies can result in a significant amount of discomfort.
Ocular allergy symptoms include tearing, itchiness, swelling and stinging. Vision can often be affected as well by blurriness or sensitivity to light. These symptoms can make it so uncomfortable for those affected that they interfere with work, school, sports and leisure activities.
If you wear contacts, eye allergies are sometimes worse since contact lenses can often attract allergens. In addition, we tend to rub eyes that itch, which can cause even more discomfort for those wearing contacts. Contact wearers experiencing ocular allergies often find themselves using rewetting drops more frequently or even restricting the use of their contacts or switching to glasses. If you wear contacts and experience fall allergies, you may want to consider a different brand of contacts, particularly if you aren't using daily disposables which minimize the likelihood of allergen collection. If you are experiencing discomfort from your contacts, schedule an appointment at our Mill Creek, WA optometry practice to discuss your options.
For anyone suffering here are some ways to reduce exposure and symptoms of fall ocular allergies:
- Check the area pollen count and remain indoors when counts are high, particularly at peak times such as midday.
- Keep windows closed as much as possible, especially when driving.
- Clean carpets and curtains frequently to remove pollen that has entered the house.
- Clean floors with a damp mop instead of sweeping which tends to stir up rather than clean away allergens.
- Try not to rub your eyes. Use a cool compress for soothing irritation or itchiness.
- Reduce mold in your home by keeping humidity under 50% and using a dehumidifier if necessary.
If over the counter medications are not helping a prescription medication may be more effective. In this case, schedule an appointment with your optometrist now to talk about your options and begin effective treatment. Our Mill Creek, WA eye care practice would be happy to help your eyes feel their best despite allergy season!