People often experience allergic reactions in their eyes, and it is important to recognize these symptoms, to prevent them in the future, and to know how to proceed in such situations. Allergies usually affect both eyes, and they are not contagious.
The moment an allergy reaches the eye, it triggers a whole allergic reaction in which our mast cells release histamine. This causes a number of symptoms.
The best way to prevent eye allergies is to avoid the allergen that causes them. Thus, if you know you're allergic to something, try to avoid it. It's really important not to scratch your eyes, as that can aggravate the symptoms.
Other tips include:
There are several ways to treat eye allergies.
In the case of mild eye allergies, over the counter artificial tears are typically prescribed. Artificial tears should be stored in the refrigerator so that when you use the eye drops, they provide a cool sensation, and they soothe your eyes and ease any symptoms.
Antihistamine eye drops or mast cell stabilizer eye drops can be prescribed for eye allergies that are more severe to deal with the cause of why your symptoms are happening as a result of the whole allergic reaction and inflammatory process going on. Most often, pataday or pazeo eyedrops are prescribed. The patient only has to apply one drop each eye per day.
However, if it still does not help and your allergies are a little bit more severe than that, you can also take oral antihistamines like Allegra, Claritin, or Zyrtec. Furthermore, if you suffer from seasonal allergies, you can take these prophylactically so that you won't have the harsh symptoms as you would when the season comes and you're really allergic and have puffy eyes.
Another way to reduce the symptoms of eye allergies is to apply cool compresses over your eyes to really soothe them and reduce puffiness.
In the case where eye allergies are really severe and nothing seems to work, your eye doctor may prescribe you steroid eye drops. These really help to reduce any symptoms of itchiness and calm your eye. However, you must visit your eye care provider so that they can prescribe the right steroids since there are side effects of these steroids, such as increased eye pressure. Having regular follow ups with your eye doctor is really important when using steroid eye drops for eye allergies.