Although many associate eye allergies with the arrival of springtime, just as many people suffer during the autumn as well. Above nasal symptoms such as sneezing and congestion, symptoms that affect the eyes can severely impede one's ability to go about one's normal functions.
Ocular allergy symptoms include tearing, itching, swelling and burning. Vision can often be affected as well by blurriness or sensitivity to light. These effects can be so debilitating for those suffering that they interfere with work, school, sports and leisure activities.
When an individual with allergies is exposed to an allergen he or she has a sensitivity to, the immune system sends out histamines to combat the ''intruder''. This reaction by the oversensitive immune system results in typical allergic symptoms which include general symptoms as well as eye related symptoms.
For contact lens wearers eye allergies can frequently be exacerbated because contact lenses can often attract allergens. In addition, we tend to rub eyes that itch, which can result in even more discomfort for those wearing contacts. Use of rewetting drops can sometimes reduce symptoms but many contact wearers decide to switch to glasses. If you wear contacts and experience fall allergies, it could help you to try switching brands, particularly to single use, daily disposables which minimize the likelihood of allergen collection. If you are experiencing problems from your contacts, visit our Knoxville, TN optometry practice to discuss your options.
Whether you wear contacts or not, here are a few ways to minimize exposure and symptoms of autumn eye allergies:
- Check the local pollen count and stay indoors when counts are high, particularly at peak times such as midday.
- Wear large sunglasses to 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 rather than a broom 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.
- Clean areas prone to mold frequently with a bleach solution.
If over the counter medications are not helping a prescription medication may be more effective. If this is the case, make a visit to your eye care professional now to discuss your options and begin effective treatment. Our Knoxville, TN optometry practice is here to assist you in regaining your comfort this fall!