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Protecting your eyes during allergy season

As well as breathing in pollen and spores during allergy seasons, pollen can affect a person through their eyes.

Depending on the weather, wearing wrap-around sunglasses can help to stop pollen getting in your eyes when you are outdoors.

Over-the-counter allergy medicines can also be used for eye allergies. Eye drops are also available that can help wash out your eyes. Allergy eye drops often contain antihistamines that help calm eye allergies.

Regardless of whether your medication is over-the-counter or prescribed, make sure you follow the directions exactly as stated by the label or by your GP or pharmacist. If you have any questions about your medication, ask your GP or pharmacist.

Avoiding eye allergy triggers

Because seasonal allergies are most often caused by plants that release pollen into the air, they can be difficult to avoid. Nevertheless, there are some approaches that you can take to help lessen your allergy symptoms:

  • Pay attention to the pollen reports. Your local newspaper, the TV, radio and websites regularly give pollen counts. When pollen counts are high, restrict your outdoor activities when possible.
  • Ask someone else to cut your grass when possible.
  • Limit your exposure to wooded areas.
  • Close your doors and windows.
  • Keep car windows closed, and consider buying a pollen filter for the air vents in your car.
  • Vacuum (ideally using a machine with a HEPA filter) and damp dust regularly.

Taking these preventive measures is often just the first step to controlling seasonal allergies. For many people, the next step is discussing allergy medications with their GP or pharmacist to help prevent and relieve the symptoms. He or she can recommend the correct medication to help prevent irritation or itchiness from occurring.

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WebMD Medical Reference

Medically Reviewed by Dr Rob Hicks on February 28, 2014

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