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Itchy eyes are the most common symptom of eye allergies. In the medical world, this condition is known as allergic conjunctivitis. The triggers vary, ranging from dust, dirt, animal hair, to mites
When experiencing itchy eyes due to allergies, a person can experience various other symptoms, such as red and watery eyes, easy glare or sensitivity to light, swollen eyes, and burning or discomfort in the eyes.
These symptoms can appear immediately when the eye is exposed to an allergen, but it can also appear after a few days.
Different Types of Eye Allergies
Just like all allergies, eye allergies occur when the body's immune system overreacts to a foreign object or substance. When an allergic reaction occurs, the body will produce antibodies and histamine to destroy the allergy triggering substance.
If it happens to the eyes, it can make the eyes feel itchy, red, and watery. Allergic eye or allergic conjunctivitis is divided into the following types:
1. Giant papillary conjunctivitis
It is a complication of using contact lenses that are not clean. If you are a contact lens wearer, we recommend using disposable contact lenses to reduce the risk of this condition.
However, if you are not suitable for wearing contact lenses, don't force yourself, and choose other aids on the eyes, such as glasses.
2. Allergic Dermatoconjunctivitis
An eye allergy that occurs due to exposure to certain substances, for example from cosmetics, perfumes, water containing chlorine, or soap. In addition, people who have this condition may also experience itchy eyes when exposed to cigarette smoke or air pollution.
3. Seasonal eye allergies
It is called seasonal eye allergy because it usually occurs at certain times, such as the dry season or when the weather is windy. Triggers are various allergens in the air, such as pollen, grass, trees, or flowers.
How to Treat Itchy Eyes Due to Allergies
Although not a serious condition, itchy eyes due to allergies that are not handled properly can interfere with daily comfort. To help overcome this, the first step to take is to identify and avoid allergy triggers.
To protect your eyes from allergy triggers, you can also use sunglasses or eye protection when you are outside the home. This can be done to prevent foreign bodies from entering the eye.
Also, don't rub your eyes even if they itch very much, because it can make allergy symptoms worse. This can also put your eyes at risk for infection.
To treat itchy eyes due to allergies, you can also do the following:
Use eye drops
Use eye drops 4-6 times a day to relieve itchy eyes due to allergies. Eye drops containing antihistamines can help relieve symptoms of itchy and watery eyes.
The use of antihistamine eye drops is often combined with other types of eye drops, such as decongestants, to shrink the blood vessels in the inflamed eye.
Meanwhile, eye drops containing corticosteroids can be used in cases of severe and prolonged eye allergies. However, this medication should be used as directed by the doctor.
If you have glaucoma, you should not use eye drops that contain decongestants. You can consult a doctor and use safer eye drops.
In addition to using eye drops, you can also take antihistamine tablets, such as loratadine and cetirizine, to reduce the symptoms of eye allergies. These drugs can also be used to treat allergy symptoms that appear in other parts of the body, such as rashes and hives on the skin, as well as runny nose and itching in the nose.
Use eye compress
To help relieve itchy eyes due to allergies, you can put a cold compress on the eye. If crusts have formed in the eyes, compress them with warm water or wash the eyelids using baby shampoo.
In addition to applying the methods above, it is also important to regularly wash various bedding, such as pillowcases, sheets, and blankets, as well as clean the floor, bathroom, and kitchen regularly using cleaning liquid. This aims to eliminate substances that may trigger allergies.
If you keep pets at home, clean their pets and cages regularly. Don't forget to also clean the carpet in a room where your pets often enter, because bacteria, dander, mites, and dirt are easily trapped in the carpet.
The symptoms of itchy eyes due to allergies generally heal within a few days after the eyes are no longer exposed to allergy triggers. However, if itchy eyes due to allergies do not improve or get worse, you should immediately consult your doctor for the appropriate treatment.