As the end of summer approaches, many individuals start to experience symptoms of seasonal eye allergies such as hay fever. Above sneezing and congestion, symptoms that affect the eyes can significantly impair one's ability to function normally.
Eyes can become itchy, swollen, and red and often sting or tear. Vision can often be affected as well by blurriness or sensitivity to light. These effects can be so debilitating for those suffering that they prohibit an individual's ability to perform in work, school, sports and leisure activities.
If you wear contacts, eye allergies can often be worse since contact lenses can often collect allergens such as ragweed. Additionally, when our eyes are itchy, our first instinct is to rub them which can cause even more discomfort for contact wearers. Lens users experiencing seasonal allergies often find themselves using rewetting drops frequently or even restricting the use of their contacts or primarily wearing eyeglasses. If you wear contacts and experience seasonal allergies, it could help you to try a different brand of contacts, particularly if you aren't using daily disposables which minimize the likelihood of pollen collection. If you are experiencing problems from your contacts, schedule an appointment at our Centreville, VA eye care practice to discuss your condition.
Whether you wear contacts or not, here are a few ways to reduce autumn eye allergies:
- Stay indoors when pollen levels are highest (usually mid-morning and early evening)
- Use large sunglasses to help block allergens from entering your eyes.
- Use a clothes dryer rather than hanging clothing out to dry whenever possible.
- Clean floors with a damp mop instead of sweeping which tends to stir up rather than get rid of allergens.
- Refrigerate artificial tears or use cool compresses for extra soothing.
- Eliminate mold in your home by keeping the house dry and using a dehumidifier if necessary.
If over the counter medications are not helping a prescription medication may be what you need. In this case, make a visit to your optometrist now to discuss your options and begin effective treatment. Our Centreville, VA optometry practice would be happy to assist you in regaining your comfort this fall!