Allergic conjunctivitis is a condition that affects the eyes and this usually happens when you are allergic to things that irritate your eyes.
When your eyes are exposed to the allergen, they may become red, itchy and watery.
Allergic conjunctivitis is caused by allergens that come in contact with the eyes.
When allergens, which are substances that cause an allergic reaction, come into contact with your eyes, your immune system would treat them as foreign substances and release large amounts of chemicals. This causes inflammation of the eyes and leads to the symptoms.
Examples of common allergens include:
Dust or wood dust
Animal or pet fur
The symptoms of allergic conjunctivitis can include the following:
Redness in the white of the eye or inner eyelid
Increased amount of tears
Swelling of the eyelids
Allergic conjunctivitis can be treated in the following ways and you can approach your pharmacist to get the following medications.
Eye drops containing decongestants
Mast cell stabilizer eye drop (e.g. Sodium Cromoglycate eye drop)
Antihistamines eye drop (e.g. Olopatadine eye drop)
Although allergic conjunctivitis can be treated without a doctor’s consultation, there are times where the condition might be more serious.
If your condition does not get better in 3 days or gets worse, you should see a doctor. You should also see a doctor if you experience any of the following:
Change in vision
Pain in the eyes
Crusting of the eyelids
Pus or discharge from your eyes
Other than using medications to treat the condition, allergic conjunctivitis can also be managed by the following methods:
Avoid the allergens
Don't touch or rub the affected eye
Wear glasses instead of contact lenses to reduce irritation to the eye
Place a cool compress over the affected eye to soothe it
This article is jointly developed by members of the National Medication Information workgroup. The workgroup consists of cluster partners (National Healthcare Group, National University Health System and SingHealth), community pharmacies (Guardian, Unity and Watsons) and Pharmaceutical Society of Singapore. The content does not reflect drug availability and supply information in pharmacies and healthcare institutions. You are advised to check with the respective institutions for such information.
The information above is solely for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for the advice provided by your physician, pharmacist or other healthcare professional. You should not use the information for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease, or prescribing any medicine or other treatment. Always speak with your physician, pharmacist or other healthcare professional before taking any medicine or supplement, or adopting any treatment for a health problem. Under no circumstances will the National Medication Information workgroup be liable to any person for damages of any nature arising in any way from the use of such information.
Last updated on Jul 2022
This article was last reviewed on
Wednesday, November 22, 2023
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