Whenever you have red, watery eyes, your eye doctor will tell you there’s a chance you have one of two things: seasonal allergies or dry eye. Most people ask if there’s a link between the two and while their overall symptoms are similar, there is only one thing that links them together: the seasons.
In this post, Joel H. McGahen, OD, discusses the link between dry eye disease and seasonal allergies.
How the Seasons Link Them Together
The effects of dry eye are usually compounded the more time we spend outside during the spring and summer. Even the winter seasons can affect dry eye disease. Studies have actually shown that whenever the pollen count reaches its yearly peak, nearly 21% of patients are diagnosed with dry eye. During the winter, on the other hand, low humidity caused by indoor heating also cause dry eye.
As stated before, the symptoms of dry eye disease and seasonal eye allergies are similar so if you can’t determine which one is which, it’s best you contact a professional like a low vision specialist Joel H. McGahen, OD. Symptoms of dry eye disease often include a gritty sensation in the eyes, excessive watering, a burning or stinging feeling in your eye, blurred vision, stringy discharge, and redness. You might also experience discomfort at varying times throughout the year and this may intensify during the dry months such as winter.
Symptoms of seasonal allergies, meanwhile, are itchy and red eyes accompanied by a burning or stinging sensation, swollen eyelids, light sensitivity, and is often accompanied by a runny nose, nasal congestion and watery discharge from the eyes. If both symptoms happen to overlap one another, then it may be in your best interest to visit an eye doctor for the best course of action.
For the best eye care services, turn to Joel H. McGahen, OD, for your optic care needs. We are your number one provider of contact lenses and low vision services. Give us a call at (717) 609-4443 or fill out our contact form. We serve clients in Shippensburg and Greencastle, PA, and other areas in the state of Pennsylvania.