Ocular allergies, also called allergic conjunctivitis, can interfere with your day-to-day life, causing loss of productivity, missed work or school, and affect your overall quality of life. Unfortunately, many people suffer for years without proper allergy testing or treatment. Many do not even realize that eye allergies are the root of their issues and simply mask the symptoms with over-the-counter medicines that only offer short term relief.
An allergy occurs when your body’s immune system overreacts to an allergen (a foreign substance such as pollen or dander), typically one that is harmless. When an irritating allergen comes into contact with your eye, certain cells release histamine to fight off the allergen. This results in red, itchy, and watery eyes. Ocular allergies have many different causes, including dust, pet dander, mold, smoke, pollen, perfumes, and even foods. Some patients may also inherit eye allergies from their parents, as people are more likely to have allergies if both of their parents also have them. If you cannot avoid the cause of your allergies, they can become more severe over time.
Overall, there are two types of eye allergies. These include seasonal, which are very common and occur at certain periods of the year, and perennial allergies, which happen year-round. Seasonal allergies are usually caused by pollen and mold spores, while perennial allergies are often caused by substances such as dust mites, feathers in bedding, and animal dander.
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If you suffer from the following symptoms, allergy testing may be right for you:
The first step in treating ocular allergies is avoidance of offending allergens, therefore it is important to find out what you are allergic to. Over time, we have found that many of our patients who suffer from eye allergy symptoms have never been tested. Many patients stick with over the counter remedies, or simply accept that their eyes bother them. We’ve found that patients who can identify the root cause of their symptoms tend to be happier, as they can do more to help prevent their allergies.
At Kung Eye Center we offer Doctor’s Allergy Formula, a simple FDA-approved, non-invasive, no-needle diagnostic test to diagnose specific allergies. The test is covered and reimbursed by all major medical insurances and Medicare. This test includes regionally specific allergens and provides results with 10 to 15 minutes.
Once tested, your individual treatment plan can be designed. Patients will be given information on the specific allergens they reacted to along with instructions for avoidance where possible. Avoiding or limiting contact with the substance causing the problem plays a large role in reducing symptoms. Treatment may include behavioral and environmental modifications and pharmacological therapy.
If you are tired of suffering from eye allergies and are looking for a solution, contact Kung Eye today to schedule your eye allergy testing appointment. Our knowledgeable team will be happy to answer any questions that you may have.