The Met office has forecast that the pollen count will be high over the next few days across many areas of England and Wales and with that, comes the onset of hay fever for many people. Almost ten million Britons* are affected by hay fever, and the College of Optometrists has issued the following advice for those suffering symptoms affecting their eyes:
Dr Paramdeep Bilkhu MCOptom, Clinical Adviser at The College of Optometrists, advises: “As we enter hay fever season and people start to spend more time outside, it’s important to highlight the impact hay fever can have on our eyes, and how we can relieve the symptoms.
“As one of the most common allergic conditions, hay fever can cause considerable discomfort, making your eyes red, itchy and swollen. While trying to avoid pollen as much as possible will help lessen the symptoms, sufferers can also visit their pharmacist to get medicated eye drops to help alleviate the itching and swelling. One of the most widespread groups of eye drops used to help relieve these symptoms are ‘mast cell stabilisers’ and can be used to prevent the symptoms before they start if you know when they might arise. If you develop eye symptoms, antihistamine eye drops can help treat the allergic reaction quickly. Your optometrist will be able to recommend which eye drops are most suitable for your needs and where you can get them from. Your optometrist is also well placed to advise on how to keep your eyes comfortable throughout the hay fever season.”
*Source Met Office
Find more information and advice on hay fever and your eyes.