Ocular allergies are among the most common eye conditions to hit people of all ages.
Though typically worse in the high allergy seasons of spring and summer, some people suffer with these problems all year. This is especially true for people who have allergies to pet dander, mold, dust mites, and other common allergens that tend to linger throughout the year.
The hallmark sign of ocular allergies is itching.
While itching can be a symptom of other eye conditions, the likelihood that there is at least some allergy component to the condition is quite high.
One component of this itching that I've found particularly true is when the itching occurs mainly in the inner corner of the eyes. This signals that the condition is allergy-related, whereas itching along the eyelid margin suggests other conditions.
Allergy itching is usually accompanied by redness, tearing, and string-like mucus discharge from the eye. When accompanied by rhinitis, sinusitis, and sneezing, people can truly suffer from their allergies – especially as it relates to the eye.
The good news is there are numerous avenues for relief from this annoying condition.
There are many over-the-counter antihistamine drops. Alaway and Zaditor are the ones I prescribe most often.
In particularly severe cases, prescription antihistamine/mast cell stabilizer combination drops, or even topical steroids, can be used. In addition, cold compresses can be a great therapy in combination with the drops.
Article contributed by Dr. Jonathan Gerard
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