Woman rubbing eyes

Eye Allergies

Allergies are the most frequently reported chronic condition in children, limiting activities for more than 40% of them.

What is Allergic Conjunctivitis?

Allergic conjunctivitis, also called eye allergies, occurs when allergens irritate the eyes causing certain cells in the eyes to release histamine, as well as other substances. This reaction causes the blood vessels in the eyes to swell producing red, watery, itchy eyes.

Common Causes of Eye Allergies

Allergic conjunctivitis is caused by allergens such as grass, trees, pollen, pet dander and dust mites.

How to Avoid Eye Allergy Triggers

  • Stay indoors during high-count pollen season
  • Keep the windows closed and air conditioner on
  • Wash your hands regularly with soap and water, especially after playing with pets
  • Keep the house dust free as possible, vacuum frequently
  • Avoid rubbing your eyes
  • Take a shower after coming in from outside
  • Clean your sheets in hot water to remove the allergens

Treatment for Eye Allergies

Besides avoiding eye allergy triggers there are medications that treat eye allergies. Some medications include over-the-counter and prescription eye drops, oral antihistamines, and allergy shots. Your pharmacist may recommend an over-the-counter product for short-term relief. Discuss all options with your healthcare professional to determine what is best for you.