Allergic conjunctivitis is an eye inflammation caused by an allergic reaction to substances like pollen or mold spores. The inside of your eyelids and the covering of your eyeball have a membrane called the conjunctiva. The conjunctiva is susceptible to irritation from allergens, especially during hay fever season. . Allergic conjunctivitis is quite common. It is your body’s reaction to substances it considers potentially harmful. Allergic conjunctivitis is often associated with allergic rhinitis -Rhino-conjunctivitis. The affected eye may have increased tears in the morning.

What are the types of allergic conjunctivitis?

Allergic conjunctivitis comes in two main types:

  1. Acute allergic conjunctivitis

This short-term condition is more common during allergy season. Your eyelids suddenly swell, itchy, and burn. You may also have a watery nose.

  1. Chronic allergic conjunctivitis

A less common condition called chronic allergic conjunctivitis can occur year-round. It is a milder response to allergens like food, dust, and animal dander. Common symptoms come and go but include burning and itching of the eyes and light sensitivity.

What causes allergic conjunctivitis?

You experience allergic conjunctivitis when your body tries to defend itself against a perceived threat. It does this in reaction to things that trigger the release of histamine. Your body produces this potent chemical to fight off foreign invaders. Some of the substances that cause this reaction are:

  • household dust

  • pollen from trees and grass

  • mold spores

  • animal dander

  • chemical scents such as household detergents or perfume

Some people may also experience allergic conjunctivitis in reaction to certain medications or substances dropped into the eyes, such as contact lens solution or medicated eye drops.

The symptoms of Conjunctivitis differ based on the cause of the inflammation, but may include:

  • Redness in the white of the eye or inner eyelid

  • Increased amount of tears

  • Thick yellow discharge that crusts over the eyelashes, especially after sleep

  • Green or white discharge from the eye

  • Itchy eyes

  • Burning eyes

  • Blurred vision

  • Increased sensitivity to light