Hay fever, or allergic rhinitis, is a common condition with similar symptoms to a cold. Sneezing, congestion, runny nose and the pressure on the sinus can occur.
It is caused by an allergic response to substances which are in the air, such as pollen. The time of year it happens depends on what substance, or allergen, the person reacts to.
It is caused by an allergic response to substances which are in the air, such as pollen. The time of year that happens depends on the person ‘s reaction to which substance, or allergen.
Despite its name, hay fever does not mean that the person is allergic to hay and has a fever. Hay is hardly ever an allergen, nor is fever a symptom.
Allergic rhinitis is the fifth most common illness in the U.S.
Important facts about hay fever
- Allergic rhinitis, often called hay fever, can cause sneezing, a stuffy or runny nose, watery eyes, and itching of the nose, eyes or the roof of the mouth.
- In the U.S., 20 million people aged 18 years and over were diagnosed with hay fever in 2016, or 8.2 percent of the adult population. Nine percent of children, or 6.1 million, received a diagnosis.
- Seasonal allergic rhinitis is more common in the spring, summer, and early fall.
- Symptoms are usually caused by allergic sensitivity to pollens from trees, grasses, or weeds, or to airborne mold spores.
- Treatment includes avoiding, eliminating, or decreasing exposure to allergens, medication, and immunotherapy, or allergy shots.
Symptoms may begin at different times of the year, depending on which substance the patient is allergic to.
When the pollen count is high a person who is allergic to a specific pollen may have more serious symptoms.
Symptoms common to all include:
- watery eyes
- itchy throat
- a blocked, itchy, or runny nose
Severe symptoms may include:
- loss of smell and taste
- facial pain caused by blocked sinuses
- itchiness spreading from the throat to the nose and ears
Some people may experience fatigue, tiredness, irritability and insomnia.
People with asthma at times when hay fever symptoms are normal can experience more wheezing and breathlessness.
A variety of over-the-counter ( OTC) treatments may help regulate hay fever. Sometimes, it is best to combine two or three. A physician can advise about options.
Antihistamine sprays or tablets: Commonly available OTC, these stop the release of the chemical histamine. These usually alleviate signs of runny nose, coughing, and sneezing effectively, but they do not unblock congested sinuses. Older antihistamines can cause drowsiness.
Eye drops: This decreases itching and face swelling. Usually, they are used alongside other medicines. Cromoglycate is also found in eye drops.
Fluticasone (Flonase), fluticasone (Veramyst), mometasone (Nasonex), and beclomethasone (Beconase) are instances.
An unpleasant smell or taste, or irritation to the nose can occur.
Oral corticosteroids: Severe symptoms of hay fever can respond well to tablets of prednisone, prescribed by a doctor. These are only for short term use. Cataracts, muscle weakness and osteoporosis are related to long-term use.
Immunotherapy: Immunotherapy can provide long-term relief by slowly desensitizing the immune system to the symptom-triggering allergens. It is usually received in the form of allergy shots or sublingual drops for people whose symptoms are severe, and after other treatments have not been cleared.
Immunotherapy can lead to a permanent remission of allergy symptoms, which can help prevent asthma which new allergies from developing.
Injections are given by a doctor but can be taken at home by sublingual immunotherapy, or medication that is dissolved under the tongue.
Alternative therapies claiming to treat hay fever include acupuncture, but no significant improvements were confirmed by the study results.
No herbal remedies are recommended.
Before taking any medication, it is important to talk to a doctor during pregnancy to avoid potential adverse effects on the fetal development.
A doctor should look at the symptoms and inquire their personal and family medical background in order to determine the correct care.
A blood or skin test may assess which substance is allergic to the patient.
The skin is pricked with a minute of a recognized allergen in a skin check.
A blood test indicates the amount of the antibodies IgE. Unless there is an allergy that would be severe. The test takes about 20 minutes to complete.
Zero IgE antibodies show no sensitivity, while 6 show very high sensitivity.
Another skin-prick procedure involves injecting an allergen under the skin and testing about 20 minutes later for a reaction.
What is hay fever?
Hay fever is an allergic reaction to substances released into the air, such as pollen.
An allergy happens when a toxic material is misunderstood by the immune system, and the body releases chemicals to counter it.
The symptoms are caused by this reaction.
Allergens are often common substances that are either not reacted to or reacted mildly by the immune system in most people.
Some people need treatment however, as their symptoms make it hard to complete their everyday tasks.
Treatment may not eliminate symptoms but its impact may be reduced.
An person cannot prevent an allergy from developing but people with hay fever can consider some strategies useful to mitigate the effect.
Here are some tips:
- Be aware of the pollen count during susceptible months. Information is available through the internet and other media. Pollen count tends to be higher on humid and windy non-rainy days and during the early evening.
- Keep windows and doors shut when the pollen count is high.
- Avoid mowing the lawn during susceptible months, choose low-pollen days for gardening, and keep away from grassy areas when pollen counts are high.
- Regularly splash the eyes with cool water, to sooth them and clear them of pollen.
- Shower and change your clothes after coming indoors, when pollen counts are high.
- Use wrap-around glasses to protect the eyes from pollen.
- Wear a hat to prevent pollen from collecting in the hair and then sprinkling down onto the eyes and face.
- Have your car fitted with a pollen filter, and drive with the windows closed at high-count times.
- Do not have flowers inside your home.
- Keep all surfaces, floors, and carpets as dust free as possible.
- Choose a vacuum cleaner with a good filter.
- Use “mite-proof” bedding.
- Use a dehumidifier to prevent mold.
- Keep away from cigarette smoke, and quit, if you are a smoker.
- Wash pets when they come indoors on a high pollen count day, or smooth their fur down with a damp cloth.
- Smear Vaseline around the inside edges of your nostrils, as it helps stop pollen from getting through.
- Ask a physician for a plan, if you know your susceptible time is just around the corner.
Hay fever happens when the immune system mistakes an airborne material which is usually harmless to a threat.
To combat the danger, the body produces an antibody, called immunoglobulin E (IgE), and releases the chemical histamine. Histamine elicits the effects.
Seasonal hay fever triggers include pollen and spores at certain times of the year that only cause symptoms.
Examples of hay fever triggers include:
- tree pollen in the spring
- grass pollen in late spring and summer
- weed pollen, especially during fall
- fungi and mold spores, more common in warm weather
Other triggers are pet hair or dander, dust mites, cockroach dust and mold. Cigarette smoke, perfumes, and diesel exhaust fumes are all irritants that can lead to symptoms of hay fever.
The risk of hay fever is increased by some factors.
Genetic factors: If there is hay fever or other allergy on a close family member, the risk is higher.
Other allergies or asthma: People with other allergies or asthma also have a greater chance of having hay fever.
Sex and age: hay fever is more common among boys before adolescence but females are more affected after adolescence.
Birth date: High pollen season born people have a significantly higher chance of having hay fever.
Second-hand smoke: The risk of hay fever rises when exposed to cigarette smoke during the early years of life.
Other factors include being the firstborn, originating from a smaller family or a family with higher income. These last three risk factors may be linked to infections in the childhood.
An infant with less infections in the childhood can run a higher risk of autoimmune problems later in life.
There is no cure for hay fever nowadays. In the periods of the year, however, symptoms may be controlled which have a high pollen count.
Treatment will start 3 months before the season in which pollen spreads for the treatment to function in the first year.
Continued treatment can reduce the symptoms, improve immunity to the allergen and improve the quality of life. It has been shown that three years of treatment will lead to long-term desensitization against pollen.
If symptoms do not substantially improve after one year, however, medication should be stopped, because it is unlikely to work.
Hay fever, moving into the lungs and developing into allergic asthma, can become even more serious. Those with a pollen allergy can also have a higher risk of developing other allergies, such as food intolerances.
Severe hay fever can also make the nose’s mucous membranes more sensitive to other irritants, such as smoke from cigarettes or dry air. That can result in sinusitis.
Symptoms, treatment, and causes of sinusitis
Sinusitis is a frequent condition in which the paranasal sinuses become inflamed. Sinus cavities create the mucus that allows nasal passageways to function properly.
Sinusitis is a condition that can be either acute or persistent. Viruses, bacteria, fungus, allergies, and an immunological response are all potential causes of sinus inflammation.
Sinusitis is a common ailment that goes away on its own, despite being inconvenient and painful. If symptoms are severe and persistent, though, a person should see a doctor.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 4.1 million people in the United States were diagnosed with chronic sinusitis in 2016. In the United States, 28.9 million people were diagnosed with sinusitis in the previous 12 months of 2018. This was equivalent to 11.6 percent of the population.
What is it?
In the human anatomy, a sinus is a hollow space. There are several types of sinuses, but sinusitis affects the paranasal sinuses, the regions behind the face that connect to the nasal cavity.
The sinuses’ lining is made up of the same composition as the nose’s lining. Mucus is a slimy substance produced by the sinuses. Mucus keeps the nasal passages wet while also trapping debris and germs.
When mucus builds up in the sinuses, they become irritating and inflamed, causing sinusitis.
Sinusitis is sometimes referred to as rhinosinusitis by doctors because inflammation of the sinuses almost usually occurs in conjunction with rhinitis, or inflammation of the nose.
Symptoms vary depending on the length of time a condition has been present and the severity of the symptoms.
Among the signs and symptoms are:
- nasal discharge, which may be green or yellow
- a postnasal drip, where mucus runs down the back of the throat
- facial pain or pressure
- blocked or runny nose
- sore throat
- bad breath
- a reduced sense of smell and taste
- tenderness and swelling around the eyes, nose, cheeks, and forehead
Sinusitis can be caused by a variety of circumstances, but it always occurs when fluid becomes trapped in the sinuses, allowing germs to grow.
A virus is the most common cause, however sinusitis can also be caused by a bacterial infection. Allergies and asthma, as well as contaminants in the air, such as chemicals or other irritants, can be triggers.
Fungal sinusitis can be caused by fungi and moulds.
The risk factors
The following factors may enhance a person’s risk of sinusitis:
- having had a previous respiratory system infection, such as a cold
- nasal polyps are small benign growths that can restrict the nasal canal and cause irritation
- seasonal allergies
- dust sensitivity, pollen sensitivity, and animal hair sensitivity
- having a weakened immune system due to medication or a health condition
- Having a septum that is deviated
The septum is a bone and cartilage that separates the nostrils in the nose. It can increase the risk of sinusitis if this becomes bent to one side due to injury or growth.
Sinusitis comes in a variety of forms and can last anywhere from a few days to several months.
Acute sinusitis is a condition that occurs when a person gets a cold or suffers from a seasonal allergy. Symptoms normally disappear in 7–10 days, but they can continue up to four weeks.
When sinusitis symptoms linger longer than 12 weeks or recur three times in a year, it is considered chronic. Chronic sinusitis affects more than half of people with moderate-to-severe asthma.
The duration of recovery and treatment are determined on the type of sinusitis.
When to see a doctor
Sinusitis is frequently treatable at home. They should, however, visit a doctor if they have the following symptoms:
- last for more than ten days without getting better
- involve severe symptoms that aren’t relieved by over-the-counter (OTC) drugs
- include alterations in vision or swelling around the eyes
- after improving, things get worse
- include a fever lasting more than 3–4 days or a temperature of more than 101.5°F (38.6°C)
Other signs and symptoms could be present. Seek medical care if a symptom causes you concern.
A doctor can make a diagnosis by using the following methods:
- ordering an MRI or CT scan to check for structural problems, in some cases
- asking about symptoms
- carrying out an allergy test to identify possible triggers
- using an endoscope to see inside the nasal passages
- carrying out a physical examination
The doctor may use a light source or an otoscope, a small, handheld device with a light attached, to visually inspect the nasal cavity. This equipment can also be used to inspect the ears.
If symptoms persist, an ear, nose, and throat specialist should be consulted for a more thorough examination.
Acute sinusitis clears up in roughly 70% of instances without the need of prescription medications. Symptoms can be relieved with a variety of home treatments and over-the-counter drugs.
These are some of the therapies and drugs available:
- Nasal irrigation: Using salt water or a saline solution, rinse and cleanse the nasal passages. One method is to use a neti pot. Always use sterilised equipment and clean water.
- Rest: With the head and shoulders lifted on a pillow, you can sleep or rest. If feasible, sleep on the side of your face that isn’t in pain.
- Warm compresses: To alleviate swelling and discomfort, gently massage the affected regions.
- Pain relief: Pain and fever can be reduced with acetaminophen or ibuprofen.
- Steam inhalation: Inhale steam from a bowl of hot water or apply a hot, wet towel to the face.
- Essential oils: It may help to add a few drops of menthol or eucalyptus oil to the hot water or towel. Never put an essential oil in your mouth or apply it straight to your skin.
- Decongestant tablets and sprays: These may help to decrease edoema and empty the sinuses. Only use for up to 3 days at a time, otherwise your symptoms may increase if you stop using the medicine. Decongestant tablets and sprays can be purchased on the internet.
- Nasal corticosteroids (OTC): This nasal spray may help to relieve nasal and sinus discomfort.
Antihistamines like cetirizine (Zyrtec) and loratadine (Claritin) are typically not recommended. They can cause mucus to thicken, worsening symptoms.
These options and how to use them can be discussed with a doctor or pharmacist.
Treatment options are determined on the length of time the condition lasts.
Acute and subacute sinusitis
A doctor may suggest treatment if symptoms persist or become severe.
Antibiotics may be prescribed if a bacterial infection is present. If symptoms persist after the antibiotics have been taken, the patient should see a doctor.
Antibiotics are unlikely to help because chronic sinusitis is rarely caused by bacteria. Reducing your exposure to triggers like dust mites, pollen, and other allergens may help you feel better.
Inflammation can be managed with corticosteroid sprays or tablets, but these usually require a prescription and medical care. Long-term usage of these drugs can have negative consequences.
If alternative therapies have failed, a doctor may consider surgery.
Surgery, on the other hand, may not be able to entirely fix the condition. To prevent sinusitis from recurring following surgery, the patient may need to continue with various therapies.
Surgery should only be used as a last resort in children with sinusitis. If a doctor advises surgery for a child’s sinusitis, it’s a good idea to get a second opinion before proceeding.
Insurers may need extensive proof that the surgery is for sinusitis and not a cosmetic procedure to improve the appearance of the nose.
The following suggestions may aid in the prevention of sinusitis:
- Keeping your hands clean.Smoking and secondhand smoke should be avoided.
- Vaccinations must be kept up to date.
- Avoiding people who have colds or other respiratory diseases
- Using a humidifier to keep the air clean and moist at home.
- Keeping air conditioning units clean to avoid mould and dust buildup.
- When as all possible, avoid and manage allergies.
Sinusitis is a frequent problem that affects a large number of people and can be caused by a variety of causes. It is usually mild, and it can be treated at home or with over-the-counter medications.
A doctor can assist in finding a remedy if sinusitis causes severe symptoms or lasts for several weeks.
Allergic conjunctivitis: What to know
When a person’s eyes come into touch with an allergen, a chemical that causes the body’s immune system to respond, allergic conjunctivitis develops.
The eye gets inflamed and painful. The overactive immune system causes the body to produce histamine and other active compounds through mast cells, resulting in symptoms. The nerve terminals are irritated when blood vessels dilate or expand. As a result, the amount of tears secreted increases.
Infectious conjunctivitis differs from allergic conjunctivitis. The causes are not the same.
When the immune system overreacts to a substance, an allergic response occurs. The majority of people do not react to dust, pollen, or other substances in this way, but other people are more sensitive.
Allergens that typically cause allergic conjunctivitis include:
- eye drops
- pollen, as in hay fever
- animal fur
- dust mites.
There are different types of allergic conjunctivitis.
1) Seasonal allergic conjunctivitis or allergic rhinoconjunctivitis
In regions with cold winters, pollen is the most prevalent allergen that causes conjunctivitis.
Other symptoms of pollen-induced conjunctivitis include sneezing, an itchy, clogged, or runny nose, and itchy, watery eyes.
Hay fever is also known as seasonal allergic conjunctivitis or allergic rhinoconjunctivitis.
It generally takes place in the spring and summer. Plants, particularly grass, trees, and flowers, are in pollen during this time. Some people get symptoms in the early autumn.
2) Contact conjunctivitis
Cosmetics, eyedrops, or other chemicals that irritate the conjunctiva in people who are vulnerable induce symptoms known as contact dermatoconjunctivitis. An allergic reaction occurs when these compounds come into contact with the body. Some people are hypersensitive to certain chemicals.
After the substance comes into contact with the eyes, symptoms generally appear 2 to 4 days later.
3) Papillary conjunctivitis (giant papillary conjunctivitis)
This is a common side effect of wearing contact lenses. Contact lenses can be uncomfortable for some people. This might grow worse and more unpleasant with time, causing the eyes to become red.
When a person wears hard contact lenses following eye surgery, giant papillary conjunctivitis (GPC) can develop.
Infections of the eye can be caused by poor hygiene when handling contact lenses, solutions, and cases.
4) Perennial conjunctivitis
Perennial conjunctivitis is a kind of conjunctivitis that lasts all year. It is mostly caused by an allergy to home dust mites. These tiny insect-like critters like to reside in bedding, upholstered furniture, and carpets.
Dust mites feed on human skin cells and like warm, damp people.
An allergic reaction to a particular dust mite protein is known as dust-mite allergy. Conjunctivitis, a clogged or runny nose, sneezing, and airway tightness, as seen in asthma, are all symptoms of this.
Animal dander, minute scales from animal skins or hair, and bird feathers are among the other causes. Some people may experience an allergic response to them.
The following suggestions may help:
- Cold compresses: The eyes can be soothed by placing a wad of cotton wool soaked in cold water on the eyelid.
- Avoiding the allergen: Staying indoors while the pollen count is high, keeping the house clean, and limiting soft furnishings can all help.
- Contact lenses should be avoided at all costs: These should not be used until all symptoms have vanished. After using any eye medicine, wait at least 24 hours before putting contact lenses back on.
- Artificial tears: These eye drops dilute the allergen and help remove it.
- Refraining from rubbing the eyes: Rubbing might aggravate the irritation. It’s tempting to touch inflamed eyes, so this might be challenging.
Antihistamines, mast cell stabilizers, and corticosteroids are used to treat the condition.
Antihistamines, taken orally or as eye drops, may provide quick relief from symptoms. Histamines are blocked by antihistamines. When the immune system responds to a foreign substance, histamines are produced.
Cetirizine, fexofenadine, and loratadine are oral antihistamines used to treat allergic conjunctivitis. Once a day is generally plenty. Alaway and Zaditor are antihistamine eye drops. The eye drops will aid with eye problems, but the oral dose will help with a runny nose and other symptoms as well.
Azelastine, emedastine, and ketotifen are the most regularly prescribed antihistamine eye drops. They’re used twice or three times a day on the eyes.
Some antihistamines might make you sleepy. People who are taking them for the first time should avoid driving or using heavy machinery until they know how they will react to the drug.
Mast cell stabilizers
Mast cell stabilizers take longer to operate than antihistamines, but their effects stay longer once they do.
Lodoxamide and nedocromil are the most often used mast cell stabilizers. They are available as eye drops.
Antihistamines and mast cell stabilizers are used by certain patients. Before the mast cell stabilizers start acting, the antihistamines give some relief from symptoms.
These are only used in extreme cases and are rarely prescribed. The adrenal cortex produces corticoid, a steroid hormone. Synthetic corticosteroids are a type of drug that can reduce swelling and suppress the immune system.
Corticosteroids are effective, but they should be taken with caution and only for a short period of time due to the risk of adverse effects.
The majority of people who suffer from allergic conjunctivitis have issues with both eyes.
Symptoms may occur rapidly after coming into touch with the allergen in the eyes. Symptoms may develop after 2 to 4 days in other circumstances, such as when eye drops cause a response.
The following are some of the signs and symptoms of allergic conjunctivitis:
- Eyelids swollen: When the conjunctiva becomes inflamed or if the person rubs their eyes a lot, the eyelids may puff up.
- Soreness: The inflammation may cause pain and tenderness throughout the affected area. Some people describe the pain as burning.
- Red or pink eyes: As the capillaries, or small blood vessels, in the conjunctiva widen, the eyes become irritated.
- Pain: One or both eyes may be affected. If a person has painful, red eyes, is light sensitive, or has vision problems, they should see a doctor right away.
- Itchiness: Itching may occur as the eyes become irritated. Rubbing can aggravate the itching.
Seasonal allergic conjunctivitis affects people at specific seasons of the year, generally from early spring to summer and occasionally into fall.
Perennial allergic conjunctivitis patients are vulnerable at any time of year. They could notice that their symptoms are more severe at some times of the day than at others.
Contact conjunctivitis can be identified by red, cracked, or dry eyelids. The symptoms of contact conjunctivitis and giant papillary conjunctivitis are not seasonal, and they can appear at any time of year.
A doctor will examine the patient and inquire about signs and symptoms such as sneezing and a runny nose to diagnose allergic conjunctivitis.
Other conditions with comparable symptoms may need to be ruled out as well.
Anyone experiencing the following symptoms should contact a doctor right once, since they might be signs of a more serious problem:
- vision problems
- very red eyes
- painful eyes
- sensitivity to light, or photophobia
Aside from allergic conjunctivitis, the following disorders can cause redness in the eyes:
- Keratitis: The cornea gets irritated and ulcerated on occasion. It can sometimes lead to corneal scarring, resulting in irreversible vision loss.
- Iritis: Iris inflammation is a condition in which the iris becomes inflamed. The iris may cling to the lens if left untreated, limiting critical fluid outflow from the pupil. It’s possible that irreparable eye damage will develop.
- Infective conjunctivitis: This is caused by bacteria or virus. It’s possible that it’s caused by the herpes virus, and it might signify a sexually transmitted infection (STI).
- Acute glaucoma: In the eye, pressure builds up. Symptoms might emerge quickly. Acute glaucoma, if left untreated, can result in irreversible visual loss.
The doctor will also look to see if the discomfort is caused by an item or substance, such as an eyelash.
If the patient’s symptoms are severe or worsening, the doctor may recommend them to an ophthalmologist, or eye specialist.
After recent eye surgery, anyone who gets papillary conjunctivitis will be sent to an ophthalmologist. To ensure that therapy is effective, the eye or eyes must be closely monitored.
Complications of allergic conjunctivitis, whether chronic or seasonal, are uncommon.
Allergic conjunctivitis can have a negative influence on a person’s quality of life, although it seldom has a long-term effect on health.
Dermatoconjunctivitis and large papillary conjunctivitis can also cause complications.
It’s possible that the cornea will get inflamed. Keratitis is a condition that causes ulcers to grow on the cornea. This raises the danger of scarring and the chance of vision loss for the rest of one’s life.
Keratitis symptoms include:
- blurred vision
- a feeling that there is something in the eye
- watery eyes
- intense pain in the eye
- sensitivity to light
If any of these symptoms appear, the person should seek medical attention.
Finding out what causes allergic rhinitis and avoiding the allergen is the best method to prevent it.
Pet fur and pollen are two common allergies.
If your pet is the source of your allergy, try the following:
- wash their bedding regularly
- brush them regularly and wash them every 2 weeks
- keep pets out of the bedroom
If you’re going to a residence with a pet, taking an antihistamine one hour ahead of time may help alleviate symptoms.
If pollen causes an allergic response, do the following:
- use wraparound sunglasses to protect your eyes
- bathe and change your clothes after being outside
- try to get someone else to cut the lawn for you
- stay inside and keep doors and windows closed when the pollen count is high
- avoid areas with a lot of grass, flowers, or trees
Pollen counts are greatest in the mid-morning and early-evening hours.
If you have an allergic reaction to home dust mites, you should:
- choose anti-allergenic matresses and bedding
- vacuum often, and dust with a clean, damp cloth
- avoid soft furnishings, such as carpets and drapes
- use a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter
What are the most common causes of eye pain?
Eye pain can be caused by a number of things. It is usually split into three categories: disorders affecting the cornea, conditions affecting other parts of the eye, and conditions involving other parts of the body that produce pain in the eye area.
The most common causes of eye pain usually revolve around certain parts of the eye. The cornea, the white of the eye (sclera), and the conjunctiva, a thin covering that covers it, are among them. The iris is the colorful portion of the eye.
Eye pain can also be caused by the muscles that regulate the eye, nerves, and the eyelids.
Glaucoma is caused when there is an imbalance in the production and outflow of fluid in the eye, resulting in dangerously high pressure in the eye. This increased pressure causes the optic nerve to suffer damage, which might eventually result in irreparable vision loss.
People may report eye redness, irritation, blurred vision, or headaches, but glaucoma causes gradual vision loss that can go untreated for years. Because vision loss is irreversible, early diagnosis is crucial.
However, once detected, visual loss can be avoided with the right therapy. Eye drops containing beta-blockers or other substances may be administered to lower eye pressure.
The type of therapy you receive is determined on the severity of your glaucoma. If the eye pressure is exceptionally high or if eye drops are ineffective, surgery may be necessary. Doctors may choose to expand or even develop a new drainage system in the eye.
A full eye exam should be done every 1 to 2 years for those who are at high risk for glaucoma. Doctors will take your eye pressure or use a tonometer to do so. A tonometer is also used to examine for any abnormalities in the optic nerve that might suggest glaucoma damage.
Glaucoma is the world’s second most prevalent cause of blindness, and people over the age of 60 are six times more likely than others to have it.
Uveitis is an inflammation of the pigmented lining of the eye that can occur anywhere. The uvea, often known as the uveal tract, is a portion of the eye.
Infection, damage, or an autoimmune condition can cause the region to become inflamed. The cause of inflammation may be unknown in some circumstances.
Uveitis symptoms include:
- loss of vision or blurry vision
- redness in the eye
- eye ache
A slit lamp can be used to diagnose uveitis during a physical examination. Because uveitis can result in lasting damage to the eye, it should be treated as soon as feasible.
Corticosteroids are commonly used as a treatment, usually in the form of eye drops. Other pharmacological therapy, as well as surgery, may be required to dilate the pupils.
Endophthalmitis is an infection of the eyeball caused by bacteria that enter through a surgical incision or a damage to the eyeball. The infection has moved via the circulation to the eye in some cases, though this is a rare occurrence.
Bacteria are the most common cause of infection, but fungi and protozoa can also be involved. Endophthalmitis can cause the following symptoms:
- sensitivity to bright light
- decreased vision
- eyelid swelling
- severe eye pain
- redness in the white of the eye
People should seek medical help right away. Even prompt treatment for endophthalmitis isn’t always enough to prevent visual loss. Unfortunately, even a few hours of delay might result in irreparable eyesight loss in some circumstances.
Antibiotics, corticosteroids, and surgery are all options for treatment. Doctors can remove contaminated tissue from the interior of the eye during surgery, which could help to end the infection.
The most prevalent cause of eye pain is an issue with the cornea. The cornea is the eye’s outermost layer. The front of the eye is covered with a transparent dome-shaped covering.
The fluid-filled area between the iris and the inner section of the cornea is affected by several corneal diseases.
Dirt, germs, and other harmful or foreign particles that may hurt the eye are kept out by the cornea, which functions as a direct barrier. The cornea also helps to protect the eyes from the sun’s harmful ultraviolet light (UV).
Corneal diseases include the following:
- Peripheral ulcerative keratitis: Inflammation and ulceration of the cornea are symptoms of this eye condition. People with connective tissue illnesses, such as rheumatoid arthritis, are more likely to develop this condition.
- Corneal ulcer: An infection of the eye that causes in an open sore on the cornea. Open sores can be caused by contact lenses, accidents, medicines, and dietary deficits. Pain, redness, and ripping are all symptoms of ulcers.
- Herpes simplex keratitis: Herpes simplex is a virus that causes an infection in the eye.
- Bullous keratopathy: Blister-like corneal edema characterizes this eye condition. Blisters can rupture, causing excruciating pain, eye irritation, and vision loss.
Minor injuries or scratches to the cornea, like other body parts, can recover. The wound normally heals on its own and has no long-term effects on eyesight.
Deeper injuries can result in corneal scarring, which can generate a haze on the cornea, obstructing vision. People with a profound injury or corneal disease may experience the following symptoms:
- nausea or fatigue
- bulging of an eye
- inability to move eye in all directions
- pain in the eye
- sensitivity to light
- reduced vision or blurry vision
- redness or inflammation in the eye
People with corneal disease or injury may suffer pain, tears, and a reduction in vision sharpness.
Anyone who is suffering any of these uncommon eye symptoms should see an eye doctor right once. A comprehensive eye examination is required to identify corneal disease or other eye problems.
The cornea and eye region are frequently examined with a slit light. The doctor may check the eye at extremely high magnification using this device. Fluorescein eye drops can be used to stain the portions of the cornea temporarily, making it easier for the doctor to observe.
To collect a sample, doctors may even scrape the surface of big sores in the eye. The material is cultivated in order to determine the source of the illness.
The doctor can then choose the appropriate antibiotic to combat the illness once the cause has been determined. The following are examples of common eye treatments:
- removal of foreign bodies
- transplantation of the cornea
- antibiotic or antifungal drops
- pain relief with eye drops, oral drugs, or both
Foreign objects and abrasions
Abrasions caused by foreign objects are the most prevalent cause of corneal damage.
Abrasions can be caused by a variety of factors, including:
- contact lenses
- make-up applicators
- particles from the wind
- working with tools or any other type of debris
Minor scratches on the cornea may occur after the foreign items have been removed. Because the surface cells of the eye regenerate quickly, most scratches heal in 1 to 3 days.
A medical examination, on the other hand, can identify whether the cornea has been scratched, and timely antibiotic therapy can avoid infection.
Pain relief medication in the form of eye drops is also routinely prescribed.
After the injury, an eye expert should be consulted for a follow-up examination.
Eye care advice
People should wash their hands on a frequent basis. It’s important not to share make-up, contact solutions, eye drops, or anything else that might transfer germs.
Preventing eye pain can be as easy as taking care when doing simple tasks like putting on cosmetics or contacts lenses. If people aren’t careful, contact lenses can easily cause corneal abrasions and infections.
When lenses are not thoroughly cleaned and particles remain on them after they are inserted in the eye, they might damage the surface. Abrasions can also be caused by lenses that have been worn for too long, left in incorrectly while sleeping, or worn while the eyes are excessively dry.
When touching the region around the eyes, making sure your hands are clean can help prevent infections.
Although most abrasions heal without issues, some do develop into infections like conjunctivitis (pink eye), which is very infectious.
When doing any activity where particles might easily go into the eyes, people should always wear protective eyewear.
Though problems with the cornea are the most common, problems with other parts of the eye can cause eye pain and should not be affected. Any changes or issues with the eyes, such as pain, redness, or vision loss, should be addressed.
Many eye disorders may be addressed if identified early, but if not treated promptly, they can cause irreparable damage or even blindness.
Regular eye exams may aid in the detection of any abnormalities that may exist, as well as ensuring that the proper diagnosis and treatment are delivered.