Allergies and Your Eyes

July 10, 2013

Do you feel like your eyes burn every time you walk outside during the spring or summer? Are your eyes itchy, watery, or otherwise irritated? You may be suffering from ocular allergies. Ocular allergies can cause the eye to be itchy, irritated, swollen, and may cause significant tearing. Swollen eyelids are also a possible result of eye allergies.

The causes of ocular allergies are as varied as the causes for systemic allergies, but may include: dust, mold, pollen, mold, and pet dander. In addition, the preservatives found in artificial tears may cause rebound inflammation, especially in patients who overuse the drops. Ocular allergies can have a severely negative impact on your daily life; they can be so severe that you avoid activities you enjoy, including: gardening or yardwork, walking or biking outdoors, swimming, having pets, or cleaning (though that last one I think we all may wish we could avoid!). 

Treatments for ocular allergies include topical drops (such as anti-inflammatory drops, steroid drops, and/or antihistamine drops), specifically allergy-related drops like Pataday, Alaway, Lastacaft, Bepreve, or over-the-counter Zatidor, oral allergy medications, and/or using a preservative-free artificial tear, as needed. If you notice that your eyes are irritated, tearing, uncomfortable, or if you feel you have to avoid activities you love to avoid eye irritation, any of our caring medical professionals would be happy to evaluate your condition and determine the most effective treatment for you!