As the end of summer approaches, many people begin to experience symptoms of ragweed allergy or hay fever. Above sneezing and a stuffy or runny nose, ocular allergies can significantly impede one's ability to go about one's normal functions.
Eyes are often itchy, puffy, and red and often sting or tear. Vision can often be affected as well by blurriness or light sensitivity. These symptoms can be so debilitating for allergy sufferers that they interfere with work, school, sports and leisure activities.
If you wear contacts, symptoms are sometimes exacerbated because lenses can often collect pollen. Further, when our eyes itch, we tend to rub them which can result in even more irritation for those wearing contact lenses. Use of artificial tears can sometimes reduce discomfort but many contact lens wearers choose to switch to glasses. If you wear contacts and experience fall allergies, it could help you to try a different brand of contacts, particularly if you don't use daily disposables which reduce the likelihood of pollen collection. If you are experiencing discomfort from your contacts, schedule an appointment at our Lambertville, NJ optometry practice to discuss your condition.
Whether you wear contacts or not, here are a few tips to reduce autumn ocular allergies:
- Check the local pollen count and remain indoors when counts are high, particularly at peak times such as midday.
- Keep windows closed as much as possible, especially when driving.
- Clean carpets and curtains frequently to get rid of allergens that have entered the house.
- Rather than a broom, clean floors with a damp mop, which is more effective at cleaning away allergens.
- Apply chilled artificial tears or use cold compresses for soothing irritation.
- Shower every night to clean yourself of any allergens you may have collected throughout the day.
While over the counter medications and eye drops can sometimes help relieve symptoms, a prescription medication may be what you need. In this case, make a visit to your eye care professional as soon as possible to talk about your options and begin effective treatment. Our Lambertville, NJ optometry practice would be happy to assist your eyes feel their best despite allergy season!