Should You Drop Your Allergy Eye Medications
Seasonal or year-long eye allergies, or allergic conjunctivitis, can make you see red.
In addition to redness , symptoms of eye allergies include:
- Blurred vision
- Runny nose
Unless a viral infection develops , an eye allergy is not usually serious. But it can be quite uncomfortable.
The AmericanTM Academy of Ophthalmologists cites the following as eye allergy triggers: pollen, grass, weeds, dust, chemicals and pet dander. Youll notice that these are the same allergens that cause allergic rhinitis, and the two conditions usually go hand in hand. However, while allergic rhinitis affects the nasal passages, eye allergies, per WebMD, occurs when the thin layer of skin that covers the front of your eyes and the inside of your eyelids becomes irritated.
The most common self-treatment for irritated eyes is eye drops, but over-the-counter drops should only be used for two to three days and you should not use them with contacts. The type of drops you use depends on your symptoms and include:
Antihistamines: Good for watery, itchy eyes, these drops work quickly, but only for a short time.
Nonsteroid anti-inflammatories: Used to treat itchy eyes, these drops can cause burning when first applied and are only effective for about an hour.
Corticosteroid anti-inflammatories: Although helpful for severe or long-term issues, these drops can have serious side effects including cataracts, eye infections, glaucoma and increased pressure in the eye.
How To Use Essential Oils To Ease Congestion
Essential oils for sinus congestion can help to break up mucus that is constricting your airways and making it hard to breathe. The powerful aromas of many essential oils along with the antibacterial properties can help you find relief from sinus infections and congestion.
Here is the essential oil recipe to relieve a dripping nose, sinus pressure, and congestion that accompanies sinusitis:
What Is A Sinus Infection
A sinus infection, also known as sinusitis or rhinosinusitis, is a condition where the tissues lining the nasal passages become inflamed. Sinus infections are very common, affecting nearly 30 million people in the U.S. each year, and a large percentage of these infections resolve on their own. Common sinusitis symptoms include nasal congestion, sore throat, headache, and facial pain.
Simply explained, a sinus infection occurs when there is an infection in the sinuses, a connected system of air-filled spaces in the skull. Under normal conditions, mucus drains out so that air can pass through sinus cavities. When fluid builds up in the sinuses, germs grow and an infection can occur.
Sinus infections can cause facial discomfort because of nasal congestion. You may experience a headache, pain behind the eyes, and facial tenderness or swelling. Other sinus infection symptoms are similar to having a bad cold or intense allergies including nasal discharge, postnasal drip, fatigue, sinus pressure, loss of sense of smell, throat irritation, and even a fever.
Typically triggered by allergies or a cold, a sinus infection can take many forms. Acute sinusitis may cause mild symptoms and go away quickly without antibiotics. These cases are often caused by a viral infection like the common cold and do not require anything more than symptomatic treatment for your comfort.
Also Check: Is Zyrtec Good For Sinus Pressure
Use Turmeric More Often
Turmeric is related to ginger and carries many of the same benefits. It is commonly found in Indian delicacies such as curry. The spice is a powerful medicinal plant used in many cultures around the world. Turmeric contains a group of compounds called curcuminoids. Out of these curcuminoids, curcumin is the most studied. Curcumin has been used to treat things like hay fever, depression, and high cholesterol.
Combine a little bit of turmeric with hot water, and then gargle the mixture to clear and heal the sinuses at the same time.
What Causes Sinus Headaches
Sinus infections cause sinus headaches. Anything that makes mucus buildup in the sinuses can lead to a sinus infection, such as:
- The common cold is most often to blame.
- Seasonal allergies trigger mucus production.
- Nasal polyps, abnormal growths in the nose or sinuses. Nasal polyps can block mucus from draining.
- Deviated septum, which is when the line of cartilage and bone down the center of the nose isnt straight. A deviated septum can prevent mucus from properly draining.
Too much mucus gives germs an opportunity to grow. As germs build up, they irritate the sinuses. In response, sinus tissue swells, blocking the passage of mucus. Swollen, irritated sinuses filled with liquid make your face feel tender and achy.
Read Also: What Is The Best Sinus And Allergy Medicine
What Are Antibiotic Eye Drops
Fungi, viruses, and bacteria all cause eye infections. Infections can be very contagious.
Antibiotic eye drops treat bacterial eye infections. They work by killing the bacteria causing the infection.
Antibiotic eye drops need to be prescribed by a doctor.
Common Eye Infections
The most common eye infection is pink eye, also called conjunctivitis. Its essential to seek medical attention for conjunctivitis because its very contagious.
A doctor will determine if you have bacterial conjunctivitis, viral conjunctivitis, or allergic conjunctivitis. This will determine the most appropriate treatment course.
Another common eye infection is a stye. Most styes do not require medical treatment, but some remedies can make dealing with one less uncomfortable. For example, your doctor might recommend a topical treatment or artificial tears if your eyes are dry and irritated.
Symptoms of eye infections include:
How Do You Get Rid Of A Sinus Infection Fast
You can treat a sinus infection at home or with OTC medications for symptom relief, and/or a prescription antibiotic medication, in the case of a bacterial infection. Stay hydrated, use a humidifier, and sleep at an incline to help resolve your sinus infection quickly. Consult your healthcare provider to see if you need an antibiotic.
Also Check: What Is The Best Nighttime Sinus Medicine
What Causes A Sinus Infection
A sinus infection can be caused by several different things including:
Seasonal allergies A deviated septum: The septum is the part of the nose that divides it into right and left nostrils. Some people have crooked or deviated septums, which makes them more susceptible to sinus infections. Nasal polyps Respiratory tract infections
Sinus infections may be acute or chronic .
How To Treat Sinus Infections Without Antibiotics
While sinus infections caused by viruses, allergies, or other non-bacterial factors may not require antibiotics, they still cause the same symptoms which make you feel sick.
Symptoms of a sinus infection include:
- Nasal congestion
- Pain or tenderness around the eyes, cheeks, or forehead
- Thick nasal or post-nasal drainage
Taking steps to alleviate your sinusitis symptoms is often the best treatment to lessen your discomfort.
Sinus infection treatment options include:
- Drink plenty of fluids
- Rest, especially the first few days, to help your body fight the infection
- Moisturize the air with a cool-mist vaporizer
- Elevate your head while sleeping to decrease post-nasal drip
- Take warm showers or baths, as steam can soothe your sore throat and loosen mucus
- Gargle with warm salt water for a sore throat
- Use saline nasal spray or nasal irrigation kit to alleviate congestion
- Use over-the-counter treatments, such as nasal drops and sprays or pseudoephedrine pills, as your doctor recommends them
What Not to Do for a Sinus Infection
You should always follow your doctors instructions when you are diagnosed with a sinus infection.
- Ask for antibiotics if your doctor feels they are unnecessary
- Take antibiotics that are prescribed for someone else
- Skip doses of your antibiotics or stop taking your antibiotics early when your doctor prescribes them
- Save antibiotics for the next time you get sick
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Eye Drops For Dryness
Lubricating eye drops, also known as artificial tears, can provide relief for short-term dry eyes when they’re caused by computer eye strain, being outdoors in windy and sunny conditions, tiredness, or other temporary problems.
Most OTC lubricating eye drops add elements to the surface of your eye that are already in your natural tears. This makes your eyes feel more moist and comfortable.
It’s best to avoid decongestant eye drops for dry eyes. Decongestants can make your dry eyes look less red, but they can worsen dryness in the long run.
If your dry eye symptoms are more severe, you may need to use a lubricating gel or ointment instead of regular eye drops. Gels and ointments can cause blurry vision for a while after you put them in your eyes, so most people use them right before they go to sleep.
If OTC eye drops or ointments don’t do the job, ask your eye doctor about prescription eye drops or additional treatments like punctal plugs.
READ MORE about eye drops for dry eyes
Can You Get Rid Of A Sinus Infection Without Antibiotics
Many sinus infections are caused by a virus like the common cold and do not require antibiotics for treatment. If you have mild symptoms, OTC medications may help relieve your symptoms until you feel better. However, consult your healthcare provider if symptoms worsen or do not improve after seven days, or if at any time you have intense/severe pain or pressure, or a high fever.
Recommended Reading: Best Medication To Stop Sinus Drainage
What Is The Long
Sinus infections are primarily caused by allergies. The most common allergens are pollen, dust mites and pet dander. Those with repeated sinus infections may have chronic sinusitis, which means long-term solutions may be a better option.
Immunotherapy can help. These allergy shots enable your body to decrease sensitivity to common allergens. The Raleigh sinus doctors at Raleigh Medical Group specialize in helping patients with chronic allergy and sinus problems. While immunotherapy is effective, the treatment can take as long as one year to achieve noticeable results and maintenance treatment will likely be needed.
To find out if youre a candidate for immunotherapy, schedule an appointment with one of our internal medicine doctors. We welcome the opportunity to serve you.
Use Your Health Insurance Just Like You Normally Would To See Your Doctor
- Nasal allergies
Medical treatments are common for chronic sinusitis.
- Steroids are often the most common medication prescribed for chronic sinus infections. They are often applied through the use of drops or nasal sprays, like beclometasone nasal spray. They may also be prescribed in tablet form to be taken orally if symptoms are severe but these tend to cause more negative side effects. Steroids are designed to reduce inflammation and generally have longer courses lasting up to three months.
- Antibiotics, like those listed in the previous section, can be helpful and are usually prescribed in courses lasting three to four weeks. However, these should only be prescribed after a full assessment from an ear, nose, and throat specialist.
- In the rare event that your sinus infection is caused by a fungus, your doctor will prescribe antifungal medicines.
Your primary care physician will also inform you of things you should avoid if youre suffering from chronic sinusitis. At the top of the list: cigarette smoke. If you are a smoker, your symptoms should immediately improve as soon as you stop smoking. Cigarette smoke is a heavy irritant to your nasal passages.
Read: Get Smoking Cessation Treatment Online
Scuba divers with chronic sinusitis should also be aware of the potential for sinus barotrauma, which describes damage to the sinuses caused by changes in air pressure when diving. Persistent barotrauma can damage the nerves in the face and eyes and lead to a serious infection.
Don’t Miss: The Best Over The Counter Sinus Medication
What Are The Symptoms Of Sinusitis
Sinusitis symptoms are very similar to that of common cold or flu, and you may even develop the condition after a cold. The area where you feel pressure and pain will depend upon which sinuses have been affected, for example you may feel more pain behind your eyes or in your forehead.
Sinus infection symptoms include:
- Pain or tenderness around your eyes, forehead or cheeks
- A shooting pain in your nose and forehead when you tilt your head
Young children who have sinusitis may become irritable, find it difficult to feed and breathe through their mouth. Your child may also have a cough and a stuffy nose that makes their voice sound more nasal than usual.
Home Remedies For Clogged Ears Due To Sinus Infections
Here are some additional home remedies that can help alleviate ear problems associated with sinus infections and even wax build-up.
- Yawning helps redistribute the fluid in your ear.
- Take a hot, steamy shower.
- Make a mixture of hydrogen peroxide and warm water and pour it into the ear.
- Chew gum as it can help move wax out of the ear.
- Combine rubbing alcohol and vinegar and use the mixture as ear drops.
- Pinch your nose and blow to pop your ears.
- Drop warm olive oil into your ear once again this breaks up wax.
- Combine rubbing alcohol and apple cider vinegar as ear drops to help treat infection.
- Apply warm compresses to the ears.
- Gargle with warm water and salt.
Recommended Reading: Can You Drink On Sinus Infection Antibiotics
Best Budget: Visine Allergy Eye Relief Multi
May cause redness rebound
Doesnt last as long as other drops
The mere mention of OTC eye drops probably makes you think of Visine. The company has been doing eye care for decades, and they offer several different formulations of drops designed to help with literally any eye problem you could possibly have .
Because Visine products are pretty affordable, their multi-action eye drop is a winning budget pick for anyone who needs allergy relief stat without shelling out lots of cash. With both an antihistamine for itching and a decongestant for redness, they’re the eye drops you should grab when allergies catch you by surprise and leave you roaming the pharmacy aisles in desperation.
You can use these drops up to four times per day as needed, but not for more than 72 hours in a row. These drops contain a decongestant which you could become dependent on if you use them consistently. Eye allergies that are seasonal or require longer symptom relief should be treated with a product that doesnt contain any decongestant.
Active Ingredients: Naphazoline HCl 0.025%, Pheniramine maleate 0.3% | Dosage: 1 or 2 drops in the affected eye up to four times a day
How Are Sinus Headaches Diagnosed
Most of the time when people diagnose themselves with a sinus headache, its really a migraine. So, its important to see your healthcare provider to get an accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment.
Your healthcare provider will perform a physical exam and ask about your symptoms. If your symptoms are severe or ongoing, you may also need imaging tests. A magnetic resonance imaging test can rule out serious brain conditions. Multiple imaging tests can reveal sinus blockages and include:
- Computed tomography scan.
- Nasal endoscopy .
Recommended Reading: Good Medicine For A Sinus Infection
What Our Editors Say
“My allergies can get to the point where I am pretty much rendered incapable of not sneezing or rubbing my eyes every other minute . Ragweed is my nemesis. My doctor recommended these eye drops and while I can’t say that I get 100% relief on mega-pollen days, they definitely tamp down eye itchiness. I put them in first-thing in the morning and give it about 10 minutes before I put my contact lenses in. When the season is in full swing and I’m feeling severe symptoms, I use them every day vs. as needed to get ahead of things.” Kristin Fuerst, Senior Quality Assurance Editor, Quality Team, Verywell
Best For Contact Lens Wearers: Refresh Optive Lubricant Eye Drops
Can be used with contacts
Relieves grittiness, blurriness, and itching
Wont treat allergies
May need to be applied frequently
Good news for contact lens wearers who also suffer from allergies: you dont have to choose between your contacts and freedom from allergy symptoms! Many allergy eye drops are safe to use with soft contacts. The trick, in this case, is keeping your eyes moisturized since the one-two punch of contact lenses and allergy irritation can do a number on your eyes overall moisture.
Active Ingredients: Carboxymethylcellulose sodium 0.5%, Glycerin 0.9% | Dosage: 1 or 2 drops in affected eye as needed
Like artificial tears for dry, gritty eyes
Long-lasting moisture for irritated eyes
Can be used as needed
Wont treat allergies
Not for use with contacts
If dryness is your number one eye allergy symptom, you may want to start smallwith an artificial tear productand work your way up from there. You might not need to use antihistamine or decongestant products if lubrication solves your dryness problems.
When it comes to keeping your eyes nice and moist, Systane is a consistently good choice: with two different kinds of glycol, a humectant that attracts and binds water to the outer layer of a surface, these drops can be applied anytime your eyes need a serious refresher.
Active Ingredients: Polyethylene Glycol 400 0.4%, Propylene Glycol 0.3% | Dosage: 1 or 2 drops in affected eye as needed
You cant reapply if it wears off
May not work as well as ketotifen
Recommended Reading: What Is Used To Treat Sinus Infection
Eye Drops For Sinus Infection
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