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Allergy season is here. Here’s how to cope

Girl smells sunflowerDid you know that more than 24 million Americans suffer from seasonal allergies? The sneezing, the runny nose and those red, itchy eyes — they all can make you feel miserable. You don’t have to suffer through allergy season, though. Here are some simple steps that you can take to feel better:

Ask about daily allergy medication. Talk to your physician about taking a daily allergy medicine that you can take year-round or only during the times of the year that your allergies are in full swing. At some times of the year, you may be able to combine more than one type of allergy medicine with different active ingredients to provide maximum relief. Just make sure to ask your doctor before taking more than one variety. Your physician can help guide you through your treatment options. A visit to an allergy specialist can help, too.

Use eye drops. Ask us about eye drops that can help soothe dry, itchy eyes. There are several different over-the-counter and prescription eye drop options that can help provide relief.

Do not rub your eyes. A common sign of allergies is itchy and irritable eyes. It can be easy to try and relieve the suffering by rubbing your eyes, but doing so can also cause damage. Although it may be difficult, avoid rubbing your eyes when they are itchy. In addition to hurting your eyes, rubbing also can introduce bacteria and viruses into your body.

Drink plenty of water. With hot temperatures in the summer, it is easy to get dehydrated and that can have a negative effect on your eyes and make them even more prone to allergies. Drink at least 64 ounces of water each day and avoid beverages like soda that can dehydrate you.

Don’t leave contacts in too long. Wearing your contacts for long hours or exceeding the recommended wear time can have a negative effect on your overall eye health. It’s especially hard on your eyes during allergy season when your eyes are already irritated.