The American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology estimates that 50 million people in the United States have seasonal allergies. Seasonal allergies can cause the same symptoms as the common cold, including red, itchy, watery eyes. They may be accompanied by swollen eyelids or conjunctivitis. Here are some ways to stop the suffering of eye allergies and a few things you can do to help alleviate them from occurring at all.
How Do Eye Allergies Occur?
When someone has allergies, it is caused by the release of pollen or mold spores from plants. It is usually seasonal in nature, hitting harder in the spring and autumn when plants are pollinating. When pollen or mold spores enter a human body, the body's natural defense it to release histamines. These will trigger your body to fight the intruder (the pollen or mold spore) and will cause the same symptoms you would get in a common cold as a result.
Eye allergies can also happen if you are allergic to pet fur. The fur itself is not causing the allergy, but the dander that is contained within the fur, is the culprit. The symptoms with a pet allergy are the same as with seasonal allergies.
How Can You Find Relief?
There are a few things you can do to relieve the discomfort that you would have with an allergy. If you are a contact lens wearer, you would want to remove them if you are suffering. Allergens can get trapped underneath the surface of your lens, actually making the allergy symptoms worse. The could also cause you to damage your lens if you were to rub your eye to try to relieve the itchy. Rubbing your eyes can harm the eye itself, so do your best to keep your hands away from your eyes!
Try using an over-the-counter eye drop. These are specially formulated to relieve the discomforts associated with allergies. If you have an intense case, you may want to see a doctor and ask for a prescription for an allergy medication. These medications include antihistamines, which block the histamines from trying to protect the body. If the histamines don't get released, the symptoms do not start.
If you have severe suffering, you may need to see an allergist. This doctor will assess your allergies and may recommend immunotherapy. This is the process of injecting the body with the allergens directly to try to build up the body to reject the allergens, causing immunity.