As the end of summer approaches, many individuals start to suffer from ragweed allergy or hay fever. In addition to nasal symptoms such as sneezing and congestion, symptoms that affect the eyes can significantly impair one's ability to go about one's normal functions.
Eye 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 prohibit an individual's ability to perform in all aspects of everyday life – from work to play.
For contact lens users symptoms can often be worse since contacts can often collect pollen. Further, when our eyes itch, our first reaction is usually to rub them which can result in even more discomfort for contact users. Use of artificial tears can sometimes alleviate symptoms but many lens wearers decide to reduce the use of their lenses. If you wear contacts and experience ocular allergies, it could help you to try a different brand of contacts, particularly if you aren't using daily disposables which reduce the likelihood of allergen collection. If you are experiencing discomfort from your contacts, visit our Kennesaw, GA optometry practice to discuss your condition.
Regardless of whether you wear contacts or not, here are a few ways to reduce exposure and symptoms of fall eye allergies:
- Stay indoors during midday and early evening when the pollen count is high.
- Keep windows closed as much as possible, especially when driving.
- Keep pets indoors and bathe often since they can transport pollen into the house.
- Clean floors with a damp mop rather than sweeping which can often stir up rather than clean away allergens.
- Try not to rub your eyes. Use a cool compress for soothing irritation or itchiness.
- Take a shower at night to clean yourself of any allergens you may have collected throughout the day.
While over the counter medications and eye drops can sometimes help relieve symptoms, a prescription medication may be more effective. If this is the case, schedule a visit to your optometrist now to discuss your options and begin proper treatment. Our Kennesaw, GA optometry office is here to assist you in regaining your comfort this fall!