Allergies and Your Eyes

by Dr. Robert Benza, MD 29. March 2013 08:00

Allergies are very common in the United States.  Its that time of year when we are all excited to get outdoors
and explore our favorite activities.  The eyes can become very symptomatic during this time.  We see a great number
of patients during the spring months with itching, tearing, redness or a general irritation.  Patients may have
some or all of these symptoms.    Itching is the most common symptom.  In addition,  you typically will have
symptoms in both eyes but not always.
Some of our patients have seasonal allergies and are treated by their primary care physicians or allergists in a variety of ways
which may include allergy shots, antihistamines and nasal sprays.   If the eyes get involved,  we can use a variety
of eye drops which can decrease or eliminate the itch in just a few minutes from the time you instill the drop.
Our practice has been fortunate to participate in some of the clinical trials to help get these type of drops to the
market for patients.  Contact lens wearers may need to stop their contact wear during this time until their eyes
are more comfortable and less red after treatment.
Children also can get allergic type symptoms.  Some kids will get a condition where their eyes are red and very light sensitive
with some ropy discharge from the eye.  This can happen in the spring and summer and they often are extremely uncomfortable.
I would recommend seeing your eye physician if they experience those type of symptoms.
This is a great time of year.   Enjoy all your outside activities but seek care if you have any of the symptoms or problems
we discussed above.



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