Ocular Allergies, Causes and Tips for Relief

Did you know that…
Up to 30 to 50% of U.S. residents have allergy symptoms. Among these, 75% have symptoms that affect their eyes (Allergic diseases of the eye. Medical Clinics of North America. January 2006).

Common allergy symptoms include:
– Itchy, watery, swollen, red eyes
– Sneezing
– Runny nose
– Discomfort from contact lens wear

Causes of ocular allergies:
– Most common: dust, mold, pollen, and pet dander
– Uncommon: certain eye drops or medications, preservatives found in artificial tears or medications

– Avoid and protect yourself from allergies by using filters, sunglasses, and drive with windows closed
– Cool compressors
– Eye drops (over the counter or prescription)

If the allergy symptoms are not relieved by the first two methods, it would be best to contact your eye doctor for further evaluation and proper treatment. There may be other conditions present with similar symptoms; therefore it is best to see an eye doctor for further evaluation.

If wearing contact lenses has become uncomfortable due to allergens, it may be wise to consider refractive surgery as a form of laser vision correction.

– Dr. Marianna Petrosyan, O.D.
Laser Eye Center

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