Allergic Conjunctivitis

What is allergic conjunctivitis?

It is a disease of the outer covering of the eyeball called conjunctiva which gets inflamed due to allergens (allergy causing agents).

Symptoms

Redness, excessive itching, muddy colour of the eyes, ropy discharge from the eye, excessive watering.

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What causes allergy in the eye?

The allergic response is based on the patient’s immune system. Patients prone to allergic disorder related to skin, lungs are more likely to develop allergic conjunctivitis.

It is very difficult to pin point the exact origin of allergy in the eye. Smoke, dust, sun, pollens, pets.. etc can lead to allergy. Even a recent change in cosmetic products can lead to allergy.

My doctor has prescribed steroid drops, should I be worried?

Steroid drops are regularly prescribed to decrease inflammation and bring rapid relief. A short course of treatment is usually given to the patients. These drops should never be used without consulting your ophthalmologist.

Anti-allergic eye drops and tear supplements can be used for prolonged periods.

My child has severe itching, watering and ropy discharge every spring/summer season.

Spring catarrh is very common allergic disorder of the conjunctiva seen in children living in warm, dusty climate. The exact cause is still not known but recurrent nature of disease causes lot of discomfort to children and parents. It is advised not to allow the child to rub his eyes and follow ophthalmologist’s prescription religiously. The disease severity decreases with age and usually resolves by mid-teens.