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Keep Spring in Your Step

Optometrists can help relieve eye allergy symptoms

Spring is officially in the air! And the mold spores, dust, pollen, and a host of other allergens that come with spring are causing eye problems for many Americans.

Itchy, watery eyes are not something that you just have to live with this spring. If you suffer from eye allergies, see your optometrist to discuss options that can help you enjoy this wonderful season.

Spring can be particularly hard on contact lens wearers, but ocular allergies can also make non-contact lens wearers miserable. When allergy symptoms kick in, patients usually visit the local drugstore to pick up a systemic antihistamine for relief. While these medications can clear up systemic symptoms like runny noses, sneezing and coughing, they can make ocular symptoms worse by reducing tear quantity and quality.

For patients who experience dry eye and ocular allergy problems this spring, optometrists have a number of very effective medications.

Treating ocular allergy symptoms does not take a one-size-fits-all approach. There are many factors that go into getting the right treatment for your symptoms. When you visit your optometrist about your eye allergies it is important to accurately describe your symptoms so your optometrist can prescribe a topical medication that safely and efficiently relieves your symptoms.

If you notice your eyes becoming increasingly itchy, red, or watery, be sure to mention this to your optometrist at your next comprehensive eye exam.

Allergy sufferers can help themselves by controlling their ocular environment. Limiting exposure to environmental allergies (keeping the windows closed during the worst seasons, washing your eyes after being outside) can also limit the severity of symptoms.

For contact lens wearers, it is important to be mindful of the "surface environment" that contact lenses create. Extended wearing times, infrequent replacement of lenses, and use of potentially irritating contact lens care products can significantly exacerbate symptoms. Proper lens care is an important part of keeping contact lens wearers safe and comfortable.

Don’t just endure the spring season with eye allergies. Visit your optometrist this spring, and enjoy the season free from eye allergy symptoms!

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