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Relieving Hay Fever Symptoms in Your Eyes

contact lenses, eye care, Eye Health

Relieving Hay Fever Symptoms in Your Eyes

Spring has finally arrived, and with it comes the pesky hay fever, also known as allergic rhinitis, that many people suffer from. This condition can cause a range of irritating symptoms such as sneezing and a runny nose. According to Allergy UK, roughly 13 million people in the UK suffer from hay fever, which equates to one in five people. Hay fever is more prevalent among children and young adults, with 40% of children and 30% of young adults affected. Nevertheless, the condition can occur at any age, and it's prevalence is increasing globally. However did you know that hay fever can also cause symptoms on your eyes? In this blog post, we will examine the impact of hay fever on the eyes, the treatments available and how Eye Emporium and Open Eye can provide relief.

The impact of hay fever on the eyes

The peak season for hay fever in the UK is typically from late March to September, depending on the type of pollen. During this time, people with hay fever may experience a range of symptoms, including sneezing, a runny or blocked nose, itchy or watery eyes, and headaches.

Hay fever can have a significant impact on the eyes. The symptoms can vary from mild to severe and can include redness, itching, watering, and swelling of the eyes. These symptoms can be frustrating and uncomfortable for those experiencing them, making it difficult to go about their daily lives.

Additionally, hay fever can also lead to conjunctivitis, which is an inflammation of the conjunctiva, the thin layer of tissue that covers the white part of the eye. One of the most common symptoms of hay fever affecting the eyes is itching. The itching sensation can be intense, leading to a strong urge to rub the eyes. However, rubbing the eyes can make the symptoms worse, leading to further irritation and redness. Additionally, rubbing the eyes can lead to the release of histamine, which can cause the blood vessels in the eyes to become more prominent and cause redness.

Hay fever can also lead to watery eyes, which can be inconvenient for those who wear contact lenses. The excess tear production can cause the lenses to move around, leading to discomfort and irritation. Additionally, hay fever can cause the eyes to become sensitive to light, leading to a higher risk of developing photophobia, which is an intolerance of light.

Treating hay fever

Here are some treatment options that can help prevent or alleviate the symptoms associated with hay fever:

-Eye drops: can help relieve the symptoms of hay fever by reducing itching, redness, and watering in the eyes. There are many different types of eye drops available online or at your near opticians, including antihistamine eye drops, decongestant eye drops, and lubricating eye drops. It is important to use eye drops as directed and to consult with a healthcare professional before using any new medication.

-Cold compress: applying a cold compress to the eyes can help reduce inflammation and soothe itching caused by hay fever. A cold compress can be made by soaking a clean cloth in cold water and placing it over the eyes for 10-15 minutes. It can also be helpful to use a clean compress for each eye to prevent the spread of allergens.

-Prescription medication: in some cases, prescription medication may be necessary to manage severe hay fever symptoms in the eyes. This may include oral antihistamines, nasal corticosteroids, or immunotherapy (allergy shots). We recommend consulting with one of our healthcare professional to determine the most appropriate treatment plan.

-Avoid allergens: avoiding exposure to allergens can help prevent hay fever symptoms in the eyes. This may include staying indoors during peak pollen times, keeping windows closed, and using an air purifier to filter out allergens. Please note to wash your hands frequently and avoid rubbing the eyes, as this can worsen symptoms.

-Contact lenses: for those who wear contact lenses, it is important to take extra precautions during hay fever season. This may include using daily disposable lenses, cleaning lenses thoroughly before and after use, and avoiding wearing lenses during times of high pollen counts. It may also be helpful to use lubricating eye drops to help alleviate dryness and irritation caused by contact lenses.


If you are experiencing hay fever symptoms affecting your eyes, it is essential to seek help from a qualified optician. Eye Emporium and Open Eye are independent opticians based in London, that offer a range of services to help alleviate the symptoms of hay fever.

The first step in managing hay fever symptoms is to undergo a comprehensive eye test. Eye Emporium offers a range of eye tests, including comprehensive eye examinations, contact lens fittings, and dry eye assessments in several locations in London. A comprehensive eye test can help detect any underlying eye conditions and provide tailored treatment to alleviate the symptoms of hay fever.

Eye Emporium offers a range of eye drops that can help alleviate the symptoms of hay fever. These drops can help relieve redness, itching, and watering of the eyes. Additionally, Eye Emporium can provide advice on the proper use of eye drops to ensure maximum effectiveness.

For those who wear contact lenses, both Eye Emporium and Open Eye offer a range of contact lenses suitable for people with hay fever. These lenses are designed to be comfortable and breathable, allowing for increased airflow to the eyes. Additionally, they can provide advice on how to properly care for contact lenses during hay fever season.

If you are suffering from hay fever, feel free to book a comprehensive exam or alternatively contact your branch. to get any assistance you may need.


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