If you are one of the approximated 50 million Americans who suffer from allergic reactions, your eyes may be troubled too. They may be red, itchy, and watery and your eyes and eyelid may even be inflamed.
Allergy eyedrops are liquid medications used to treat symptoms of eye allergic reactions. Eye allergy symptoms include:
- Itchy eyes
- A burning feeling in your eye
- Seeming like something remains in the eye
- Swollen eyelid
- Red (bloodshot) eyes
An eye allergy can be activated by the very same things that cause hay fever, such as:
- Family pet dander
Particular medications or contact lenses can likewise be triggers.
Choosing the Best Allergy Eye Drops
Your doctor might first suggest you take these steps:
- Use artificial tears.
- Place a cold fabric on the eyes.
- Avoid your allergy sets off.
Which type of allergy eyedrop you use depends upon:
- The cause of your allergy
- Your symptoms
- How much the symptoms affect your day-to-day activities
There are numerous types of allergy eyedrops. Not all treat all allergy symptoms. For example, one that eliminates red eyes may not stop the itching.
Some are offered nonprescription. For others you require a prescription from a doctor. Some ease symptoms quickly. Others supply long-lasting relief.
The types of allergy eyedrops include:
- Mast cell stabilizers
- Several action
Antihistamine Allergy Eye Drops
Medical professionals usually recommend these as the first treatment for eye allergies if you can’t get adequate relief without drugs.
If you have itchy, watery eyes, antihistamine eyedrops might make you feel better. These medicines obstruct histamine in the body. Histamine is a chemical that your immune system makes when you come in contact with an allergy trigger. It causes a lot of your allergy symptoms.
Antihistamine eyedrops can quickly reduce your symptoms. But relief might just last for a few hours. You might need to use the drops a number of times a day.
Best prescription antihistamine eyedrops consist of:
- Azelastine hydrochloride (Optivar).
- Emedastine difumarate (Emadine).
- Levocabastine (Livostin).
Anti-inflammatory Allergy Eye Drops
These eye drops fall under two groups:
- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).
NSAID eyedrops affect certain nerve endings. They change the method your body makes you feel itchy.
Ketorolac (Acular, Acuvail) is the only NSAID approved for the treatment of itchy eyes. Itching typically starts to disappear about 1 hour after using the eye drops. These eyedrops frequently cause stinging or burning when first put in the eyes.
Corticosteroid eyedrops are used to treat severe, long-term eye allergy symptoms. Prescription steroid eyedrops consist of loteprednol (Alrex, Lotemax).
Doctors usually don’t recommend corticosteroid drops for long-lasting use, unless your case is really severe, due to possible side effects.
When you use corticosteroid eyedrops, you ought to have regular checkups with an eye expert to check on your eye health. These eyedrops can make you most likely to get:
Decongestant Allergy Eye Drops
These eyedrops are the best to lighten up the whites of your eyes and reduce eye redness for a short time. They narrow blood vessels in the eye area. This eases the red, bloodshot appearance of the eyes.
You can get these eyedrops without a prescription. But medical professionals don’t advise them to treat eye allergic reactions.
Examples of non-prescription decongestant eyedrops are:.
- Naphazoline HCL (Clear Eyes).
- Phenylephrine HCL (Refresh).
- Tetrahydrozoline HCL, oxymetazoline HCL (Visine).
There are some risks. If you use them for too long, it can make your eye problem even worse, with “rebound redness.” Inflammation and eye swelling can continue even when you stop using the drops.
If you have glaucoma you need to never ever use decongestant eyedrops.
Mast Cell Stabilizer Allergy Eye Drops
These are amongst the latest types of eyedrops. They assist avoid the release of histamine and other chemicals made by your body during an allergy.
Mast cell stabilizers are made to prevent your symptoms.
You may have the ability to use these drops for lots of months without any side effects. If you wear contacts, mast cell stabilizers might let you use them longer.
Non-prescription mast cell stabilizer drops consist of:
Ketotifen fumarate (Claritin Eye, Refresh Eye Itch Relief).
Prescription mast cell stabilizer eyedrops include:
- Cromolyn (Crolom).
- Lodoxamide (Alomide).
- Nedocromil salt (Alocril).
- Pemirolast potassium (Alamast).
Multiple-Action Allergy Eye Drops
Some eyedrops include more than one type of medicine. These are called dual-action or multiple-action eyedrops.
Antihistamine/decongestant combination eyedrops minimize eye itching, watery eyes, and soreness. Examples include:
- Antazoline phosphate/naphazoline HCL (Vasocon-A).
- Pheniramine maleate/naphazoline HCL (Opcon-A and Naphcon-A).
Antihistamine/mast cell stabilizer combination eyedrops treat and avoid:
- Eye itching.
These more recent eyedrops are particularly valuable for people with a condition called allergic conjunctivitis. Examples include:
- Epinastine (Elestat).
- Ketotifen (Alaway, Zaditor).
- Olopatadine hydrochloride (Pataday, Patanol).
Side Effects of Eye Drops for Allergies
As with any medicine, you ought to constantly follow the advised directions on the label. You should not use over the counter eyedrops for more than 2 to 3 days. If you use them for longer than that, it can make matters worse.
If you have an eye infection or glaucoma, you shouldn’t use eyedrops. Talk with your doctor about other alternatives.
Some eyedrops may sting or burn when you position them in your eyes. It can assist to store them in your refrigerator.
You cannot use lots of eyedrops while you wear contact lenses. Your doctor may inform you to remove your lenses prior to you use the drops and wait a minimum of 10 minutes prior to you put them back in. Or you might not be able to use contact lenses at all during treatment with eyedrops.
You’ll need to use a lot of allergy eyedrops several times a day.