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Eye allergies are very common among children. The medical umbrella term for eye allergies is Allergic Conjunctivitis. Similar to nasal allergies, an eye allergy is triggered by an immune reaction to an allergen in the direct environment such as dust, pet dander, grass and weeds, and plant pollen.
Eye allergies are divided into two types: seasonal allergies lasting for a short period of time –
known as Seasonal Allergic Conjunctivitis (SAC) and allergies lasting all year long –known as Perennial Allergic Conjunctivitis (PAC).
The conjunctiva is a clear layer of skin overlying the eyes and is sensitive to allergens in the
direct environment. It is identical to the lining tissue inside the nose. When the eye is exposed to an allergen, the body reacts to fight off this allergen and eliminate it resulting in various symptoms such as excessive mucous production and tearing.
Your pediatrician can determine why your child is suffering from an eye allergy. Consult with your pediatrician for a physical exam where he/she will conduct a routine checkup or refer you to a specialist.
You cannot cure an eye allergy, but you can help keep your child away from allergens in the environment. Your pediatrician may prescribe eye drop to reduce symptoms. Do not give your child any over-the- counter eye drops before consulting with your pediatrician or ophthalmologist.