Do you notice that your seasonal allergies start to flare up during the seasonal changes? Now that the weather is cooling down, different seasonal factors could be affecting your allergy symptoms. It’s also common for people to experience these issues in the spring when the weather is warming up.
Seasonal Allergies Can Cause Allergic Conjunctivitis
If you find that your eyes turn pink when allergy symptoms are flaring, then it’s possible that you might be experiencing allergic conjunctivitis. The irritation to the eyes can lead to a variety of symptoms that are similar to “pink eye.”
The conjunctiva is a thin, transparent membrane that covers the surface of the eyeball. If this layer is irritated and swollen, you will likely have discomfort and symptoms that affect your eyes differently.
When allergies are the cause of pink eye symptoms, then it is known as allergic conjunctivitis. But the diagnosis is “pink eye” if a virus or bacteria causes the condition. Common allergic triggers include pollen, perfume, makeup, air pollution, animal dander, smoke, medications, and more.
Symptoms of Allergic Conjunctivitis
These symptoms are a bit more severe compared to typical symptoms that happen with seasonal allergies. Common symptoms of allergic conjunctivitis include:
- Redness or pink coloring in the white areas of the eye
- Swelling around the eyelids
- Itching and discomfort
- Watery eyes
Pink eye (caused by viruses or bacteria) usually only starts in one eye but can spread to both eyes. On the other hand, allergic conjunctivitis can affect both eyes simultaneously.
Treatments and Prevention for Allergic Conjunctivitis
Since seasonal allergies trigger these symptoms, it’s important to reduce your exposure to the triggers as much as possible. Avoiding things that irritate your eyes can be helpful in reducing the irritation and symptoms.
For example, if you know that you are allergic to the pollen from trees and grass, then you might need to limit your time outside during these high-exposure seasons. You can check the weather report to know the pollen and mold levels in your area. Consider using a high-quality air filter in your home to remove these airborne particles in your living space. If you are allergic to pet dander, you should limit the amount of time you spend with animals.
Other possible treatments for seasonal allergies and allergic conjunctivitis include:
- Closing your eyes and applying a cool, damp washcloth to reduce swelling
- Taking antihistamine medications to reduce allergy symptoms
- Using lubricating eye drops to add moisture to the eyes
Talking to an Eye Doctor about Seasonal Allergies
Do you find that your eyes are often affected by seasonal allergies? Then it might be time to talk to a doctor about your concerns. Our optometry team can discuss potential treatment options, helping you find relief from the ongoing symptoms that are disrupting your life.
These treatments are available for acute conditions, such as allergic conjunctivitis, as well as chronic seasonal allergies that affect you for weeks or months at a time. Schedule an appointment for a diagnosis and personalized treatment plan.