Allergic Conjunctivitis

Thursday, February 27, 2014

When your eyes are exposed to substances like pollen or mold spores, they may become red, itchy and watery. These symptoms may mean you have allergic conjunctivitis. Dr. Edward Hill explains more about this condition in todays 60 Second Housecall.

Dr. Hill:

A clear, thin lining covers your eyeball and the inside of your eyelids. If something irritates this lining, your eyes may become red and swollen. Your eyes also may itch, hurt or water. This is called conjunctivitis. It is also known as pink eye.

When an allergen causes these symptoms, the condition is called allergic conjunctivitis. You cannot spread it to other people. Some allergens that cause this condition include: pollen from trees, grass, and ragweed; animal skin and fluid such as saliva; perfumes; cosmetics; skin medicines; air pollution; and smoke.

The condition is irritating and uncomfortable, but rarely affects your vision.

Try to figure out what causes your symptoms and avoid those allergens. For example, if you are allergic to pollen or mold, stay indoors when those levels are high.

Steroid nasal sprays and antihistamine pills may help. Eye drops can also help relieve itchy, watery eyes and may keep symptoms from returning. Your doctor will talk with you about which treatment is right for you.

For North Mississippi Medical Center, Im Dr. Edward Hill.