Springtime is here and so are all the allergens that trigger eye allergies. The good news about these seasonal allergies is that they are only temporary. But if you do suffer from allergies that is little consolation as you deal with red and puffy eyes that may become extremely itchy.

Allergens That Can Cause Itchy Eyes

The first trick to preventing itchy eyes is to determine what allergen is causing your allergic reaction. If your eyes are only itchy during this time of year, pollen is most likely the culprit. This could be pollens from trees, grass, weeds, or flowers, and since you are likely to be outdoors more often, they are difficult to avoid.

How to Relieve Your Itchy Eyes

No matter how tempted you might be, do not rub your itchy eyes. You can make your symptoms worse and possibly cause an eye infection. To help prevent and relieve itchy eyes:

  • Use cool, clean compresses to sooth your eyes
  • Talk to your physician or eye care professional about what OTC or prescription allergy medications or eye drops to use
  • Use sterile saline rinses to help flush out allergens, lubricate, and soothe your eyes
  • Stick to wearing glasses instead of your contacts during peak eye allergy season

Since it is almost impossible to avoid exposure to outdoor allergens, there are steps you can take to relieve your itchy eyes and minimize your eye allergy symptoms. Avoid going outdoors when the pollen counts are at their highest, which is usually during the mid-morning and early evening hours. Keep your windows shut and run your air conditioner. If you do go outdoors, wear your glasses or sunglasses to help stop pollen from getting in your eyes.

If eye allergies are driving you crazy, it is time to speak with an eye care professional. Contact Valley Eyecare Center at 602-955-2700 or schedule an appointment online.