How Pollen Affects Your Eyes
- Posted on: Mar 17 2015
When spring comes, people often think of trees budding, grass growing and flowers blossoming. For those who suffer from pollen allergies, spring means red, swollen, and itchy eyes and avoiding the outdoors at any cost. Although pollen affects the eyes negatively, there are solutions that can make being outdoors enjoyable again.
What Does Pollen Do to My Eyes?
- In people with allergies, pollen causes the blood vessels in the eye to swell. The body responds by creating histamine, which then causes the eyes to tear, sometimes uncontrollably.
- Known as allergic conjunctivitis, pollen can make eyes red, swollen and extremely itchy.
What Can I Do to Reduce My Eyes’ Reaction to Pollen?
Pollen allergies are difficult to deal with, but the symptoms may be reduced when certain actions are taken. Remember, every person’s body is different and what works for some may not work for others.
- Stop scratching: When an area infected with histamine is scratched, it causes more histamine to be released, which in turn causes the area to become itchier. This is true for the eyes as well. Scratching the eyes can also cause other allergy symptoms, such as tearing and swelling, to worsen.
- Wear sunglasses: By wearing sunglasses, the amount of pollen that enters the eye is reduced significantly. Sunglasses also filter sunlight, which can make eyes more sensitive.
- Use eye drops: Eye drops rinse the eyes of foreign objects, including pollen. Although some allergy sufferers still experience some symptoms after using eye drops, most agree that they are reduced and tolerable.
- Take out contacts: Not only does pollen agitate contacts and make them uncomfortable, but it can also stick to the lenses and make the allergy symptoms last longer.
- Use anti-histamines: Over the counter anti-histamines, such as Benadryl or Claritin, can help to reduce pollen allergy symptoms by counteracting the histamine production.
- Consider allergy shots: For those with allergies so severe that they interfere with daily activities or make being outside unbearable, allergy shots may be the appropriate option. These can be given over time to reduce the body’s reaction.
Is Pollen Irritating Your Eyes? Contact Dr. Julia Giyaur for a Consultation Today.
If you’re suffering from discomfort due to pollen allergies, contact New York Laser Vision. We have locations in both Brooklyn and Rego Park and can be reached by calling 718-676-6464. Call today to schedule your appointment.
Posted in: Ocular Allergies