If you've been facing problems with your eyes itching and watering a lot, you may be showing signs of allergic reaction or allergic conjunctivitis. Allergic conjunctivitis can be broken down into two types, one is a seasonal allergy which usually happens during spring and fall times of the year because of pollen and grass, and the other is a perennial allergic reaction which happens all year round because of continued exposure to allergens on a daily basis.
Eye allergies can affect both children and adults, and can either be acute or chronic. Depending on the seriousness of your condition, you might start showing signs of swollen eyelids or blurred vision. If you experience these symptoms, you should alert your doctor right away and ask for advice on eye drops for treating the allergic reaction.
Symptoms of itchy eye allergies include, but are not limited to:
- Watery eyes
- Swollen eyelids
- Red, bloodshot eyes
- Difficulty seeing/blurred vision
- Being unable to open and close your eyes comfortably due to swelling
- Sneezing or a runny nose
- Congestion and difficulty breathing
What is making my eyes uncomfortable?
An allergic reaction is usually your body's way of telling you that it has come in contact with something that it does not agree with. If the surface of your eye has come in contact with allergens like dust, pollen, mold, or pet dander, it is likely to cause an allergic reaction. Allergic reactions release histamines and cause the eyes to itch and water. The more you rub your eyes because of the discomfort, the more histamines are released, causing worsened allergy symptoms.
In some cases itchy eyes can be caused by a disease called dry eye. If you continually have problems with itchy eyes, but do not suffer from any allergies, you should consider contacting your eye care doctor to check for the possibility of other complications or disease.
If you frequently wear contact lenses and experience discomfort after right after wearing them, chances are such that you might be allergic to either the lense or the contact lens solution. Redness, discomfort, itching, and inflammation are all ways of your eyes telling you that they don't agree with what you are putting in them.
What can I do to relieve it?
It's best to avoid scratching or rubbing your eyes so that you don't accidently hurt yourself or cause trauma to the surface of your eyes by rubbing them excessively. If your eyes start itching and watering, wash them out with clean water and try to sit somewhere and keep your eyes closed for several minutes to give them time to recover.
Stay away from allergens like dust, pollen, and pet dander that you've had bad experiences with in the past. If that's not possible, be sure to wash your hands before rubbing your eyes. Wear sunglasses when outdoors or biking to prevent dust and pollen from getting in your eyes.
As a tip, remember to not use contact lenses for longer than listed on the packaging, as this can lead to infection. If you are allergic to the solution and not the lense, you might be allergic to Thimerosal, which is used in most ophthalmic products and contact lense solutions. If that's the case, try opting for a contact lense solution that does not have Thimerosal in it.