Dr. Jim Martin 08/16/2013

dandelion.jpgYou’ve probably heard the saying, “the eyes are the windows into the soul.” However, if you or your family members are suffering from eye allergies, then that window probably looks more like it’s covered with your dog’s famous nose art than any portal into your innermost thoughts. That’s because eye allergies can cause a variety of symptoms including redness, itching, watery eyes, swelling, and blurred vision. The good news is that although uncomfortable, most eye allergies don’t result in permanent damage; they can be treated easily once diagnosed by a qualified eye doctor.

What is the Cause of Eye Allergies?

Allergies are a problem for more than 54 million Americans. Nearly half of that number suffers from allergic eye disease. Eye allergy symptoms present themselves in much the same way as other eye conditions, such as pink eye. They are caused by the same forces that typically cause a stuffy and runny nose as is the case with hay fever. Those who suffer from allergies in general are more susceptible to eye allergies.

Allergic conjunctivitis is the most common allergic eye disorder and tends to be seasonal in nature.  Pollens are the primary cause of this condition, but dust mites, mold and pet dander can prove problematic as well. Some medicines and makeup can irritate eyes too. Typically, eye allergy sufferers complain of itching, redness, watering, and swelling of the eyelids.

Why do Allergies Hurt Your Eyes?

Environmental airborne allergens irritate the mucus membrane that covers the white portions of the eyeball along with the inner folds of the eyelid. Known as the conjunctiva, this tissue lining serves as a barrier that’s exposed to the full array of airborne pollutants when the eyes are open, which makes it an easy target for allergies. Rich in blood cells, the conjunctiva is a main repository of mast cells, which produces histamines in response to allergens. The conjunctiva lacks the filtering systems the nose enjoys. The nose’s filtering system is known as cilia.

How can you Find Relief for Eye Allergies?

The key to relief for eye allergies is found in the professional offices of a licensed eye care specialist. You and your family’s sight is a precious commodity. Timely evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment whenever discomfort flares up is important. If you suspect that you are suffering from eye allergies, contact Broome Optical in Amarillo, Texas. Utilizing the latest technologies in eye care, the experienced eye doctors can evaluate your sight and recommend a treatment plan designed to alleviate your eye allergies. Contact Broome Optical's excellent eye care team today.

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