Eye Allergy Prevention & Treatment

Allergy season is right around the corner. If you are an allergy sufferer and find yourself with itchy, watery, red eyes - we have some great tips for you from Dr. Dora to help prevent and lessen your allergy symptoms this season.
1.) What is the best way to combat spring allergies - especially the itchy, watery eyes?
-Always wash hands and face after coming in from outdoors. 
-Wash hair more often as pollen can linger there and when you lie down on your pillow or couch, your face can rub around in it.
-Replace older makeup
-Start taking oral medicine as soon as the symptoms start or pollen levels begin to peak
2.) How far in advance should one begin treatment to lessen the symptoms? -Ideally, once the pollen count starts to creep up, then one should start taking their oral allergy medicine as well as their allergy eye drops.  The earlier the better.
-People new to the area sometimes feel that they have a cold, and after 1-2 years, they realize the pattern, again, the earlier the better when starting treatment!
-There are great prescription eye drops you may use once a day to reduce and/or limit eye allergies. Contact lens wearers may still wear contacts if they wait 10 minutes after inserting the drops.
3.) Can I still wear my contacts during allergy season?
-For mild sufferers, simply limiting the amount of hours one wears the contacts helps. 
-Throw out contact more frequently or use one day disposable contacts during allergy season so that you insert a fresh, pollen free lens each day.
-For those who have moderate to severe allergies, discontinuing contact lenses when the pollen is at its peak cuts down on the pollen "sticking" on the lens and staying on the eye all day.
4.) When should I see a doctor about my allergy eyes?
Again, preventative measures will help cut down on the symptoms, as once allergies flare up, it's takes longer and more medicine to quiet things down.
5.) Any general advice regarding eye allergies/warning signs of something worse?
If you have pain, decreased vision, or redness that gets worse, it could be signs of other eye issues and one should see their doctor right away.
6.) What about in kids? What how can we prevent the symptoms of eye allergies in children?
-Be sure to encourage them wash their hands and face after recess or coming in from outdoors. 
-Have them change their clothes when they return home for the day.
-Keep bedroom windows closed during peak pollen days.
-Change pillow case if kids did not wash hair that day.
We hope Dr. Dora's advice helps you minimize your symptoms this allergy season!