Common vision problems: eye allergies

If you’re sensitive to indoor and outdoor allergens such as pollen, mold, dust mites or pet dander, you’re all too aware how red, swollen, watery and irritated your eyes can be. For those people who wear lenses for myopia, hyperopia, or other conditions, this discomfort can be compounded when allergens build up on the contact lens surface over time.

When someone with allergies comes into contact with one of his or her allergens, it provokes an overreaction of the immune system. The body may release histamines or other agents to fight the allergen, resulting in symptoms that can include sneezing, runny or itchy nose, coughing and wheezing, and itchy, red, watery eyes.

Preventing allergies

The best defense is to avoid your allergens whenever you can. If that isn’t possible, be prepared with over-the-counter or prescription treatments, like antihistamines, decongestants and eye drops.

To keep your eyes feeling comfortable, consider wearing a daily disposable contact lens that you replace everyday such as 1-DAY ACUVUE® MOIST® Brand Contact Lenses. Or if you have astigmatism, consider 1-DAY ACUVUE® MOIST® Brand Contact Lenses for ASTIGMATISM. With a fresh pair of contacts every day, you dodge dust, pollen and other irritants that can build up when you wear contacts over and over. In fact, clinical research has shown that using daily disposable contact lenses every day (made from etafilcon A) may provide improved comfort for people suffering from mild discomfort and/or itching associated with allergies while wearing contacts, compared to lenses replaced at intervals of greater than two weeks.

Tips for preventing eye allergies

  • Don’t touch or rub your eyes.
  • Wash your hands regularly with soap and water.
  • Wash your bed linens and pillowcases in hot water and detergent to remove allergens.
  • Don’t share eye makeup and applicators.
  • Never use another person’s contact lenses.