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6 Ways to Relieve Itchy Eyes

If your eyes are red and itchy, and there’s no obvious reason, then the chances are that you have allergies.

Allergies are caused by your body reacting to things like dust, pollen, or pet hair as though they were harmful when they actually aren’t. Your body’s reaction is to release a chemical called histamine, which is what causes your eyes to become red, swollen, and itchy.

If you have itchy eyes caused by allergies, then there are a few things that you can do to get some relief.

Take an antihistamine

Antihistamines do exactly what it sounds like they do. When your body releases histamines, they bond to the histamine receptors found in cells throughout your body, and it’s when they do this that allergic reactions like itchy eyes, sniffing, and sneezing occurs. 

Antihistamines work by blocking the histamine receptors in your body so that the allergic reaction doesn’t occur. Generally, you should experience a lessening of your symptoms within 30 minutes of taking an antihistamine.

It’s worth noting that some types of antihistamine may cause you to become drowsy as a side effect, so if you’re going to be driving, it’s important that you seek out antihistamines that are ‘non-drowsy.’ 

Allergy eye drops

Allergy eye drops provide specific itchy eyes allergy relief because not only do they contain antihistamines that will work on the allergic reaction, they also soothe the eyes immediately.

This means that allergy eye drops are a great option if you need quick relief from itchy eyes and if the majority of your allergy symptoms are occurring in your eyes.

Wear sunglasses

If your eyes are becoming irritated due to allergies, then it’s a good idea to prevent irritants from getting into your eyes in the first place, and sunglasses are a great way to do this.

Wearing sunglasses means that things like dust and pollen can’t get into your eyes, and they also have other health benefits:

  • They protect your eyes against UV rays, which damage your eyes over time and lead to conditions such as macular degeneration and cataracts.
  • They prevent tension headaches and eye strain which are caused by glare from the sun.
  • Wearing sunglasses means that you won’t need to squint to see in bright light, which is much safer, particularly if you are driving. 
  • Not only do they protect your eyes, but they also protect the delicate skin around your eyes.

Don’t rub your eyes

As much as you may want to, don’t rub your eyes! This will make your allergic reaction worse because you’re only embedding the allergen further into your eyes. Plus, rubbing your eyes is likely to make them sore.

Rinse your eyes

Rinsing your eyes with cold water will provide relief and also help to flush out the pollen or dust that is causing the allergy. Running water is much more effective for rinsing your eyes than still water.

Cold compress

You can make a cold compress by soaking a flannel in cool water. Holding this against your eyes will help to relieve some of the discomfort and itching.

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