News You Can Use
April 13th, 2012 @ 04:04pm
It's that time of year again... The good news is we get an early spring. The bad news is we get an early allergy season. Ocular allergy is the most common cause for watery, itchy eyes. In fact, 88% of people with ocular allergies experience itchy eyes.
Common causes (allergens) of itchy eye include:
Pollen from trees, plants, grasses, and weeds
What are allergens?
Allergens are what trigger your eye allergies. They are considered foreign substances that threaten or irritate the body, such as pollen or pet dander. When your eyes come into contact with specific allergens an allergic response results.
What can we do about it?
Allergen control in the home
When the outdoor air is filled with pollen, people with eye allergies often try to control their symptoms by staying indoors. But for people who are sensitive to indoor allergens, there are things you can do in the home that may help.
Tips to reduce indoor allergens
- Meticulously clean your house to get rid of the allergen sources. Wearing a dust mask while cleaning can help reduce exposure to allergens
- Rid your bedroom of allergen sources. Pay special attention to cleaning the bedroom you sleep in
- Eliminate dust mites. Make sure surfaces in the home stay clean and tidy. Uncarpeted, hard floors are best throughout the home and especially in the bedroom. A very effective practice is to put allergen impermeable covers on all pillows and mattresses, which is even more effective than using air cleaners. Wash bedding weekly in hot water (130°F) to kill dust mites
- Vacuum at least once a week. Use a vacuum with a HEPA filter or special double filter bags so that it will not release dust and allergens in the air. Use a damp or treated cloth for dusting. Leave the house for several hours after cleaning it
- Keep windows and doors closed to prevent pollen entry
- Avoid animal dander. It is suggested for people who are allergic to animal dander to not keep pets with fur or feathers in the house, and if you do, to keep pets out of the bedroom
You do not have to suffer through allergy season. There are many fantastic options ranging from simple habits to prescription medications which provide relief from ocular allergies. At Kennedy Vision Health Center we have the training and experience to help you navigate these options and find the most appropriate solution for you.
Posted by Dr. Grady Hollenbeck
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