Best Budget: Visine Allergy Eye Relief Multi
May cause redness rebound
Doesnt last as long as other drops
The mere mention of OTC eyehave 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.
Price at time of publish: $6
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
Treat Eye Allergies With The Right Eye Drops
For the sudden onset of eye allergies, drops are best.
“Eye drops do not help with nasal symptoms, but are the quickest relief for eye symptoms like eye itching, tearing, redness of the white of the eyeball, and swelling in the tissues around the eye,” Goldstein says.
Different types of allergy eye drops will either prevent or mitigate symptoms, depending on how they work. These drops are available in prescription strength and over the counter.
Here are three common types of allergy eye drops, and when they are most beneficial.
Allergy Eye Drop Comparison
By Beth Coopman, Pharm.D.
As the final article in our three-part series on seasonal allergies and medicine, were examining the final component of allergy relief eye drops. Our past articles covered allergy medicines and over-the-counter nasal sprays. These comparisons, tips and tricks should help you stay ahead of irritating and even dangerous allergy symptoms, keeping you as healthy as possible.
Store shelves are stocked with a plenty of eye-drop options. With so many choices on the market, youre probably wondering how to be certain which one is the best for you? Like allergy pills and nasal spray, the best starting point is always letting your allergy symptoms guide you.
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Side Effects And Risks
As with any medicine, you should always follow the recommended instructions on the label. You shouldnât use over-the-counter eyedrops for more than 2 to 3 days. If you use them for longer than that, it can make matters worse.
If you have an eye infection or glaucoma, you shouldnât use eyedrops. Talk to your doctor about other options.
Some eyedrops may sting or burn when you place them in your eyes. It can help to store them in your fridge.
You canât use many eyedrops while you wear contact lenses. Your doctor may tell you to remove your lenses before you use the drops and wait at least 10 minutes before you put them back in. Or you may not be able to wear contact lenses at all during treatment with eyedrops.
Youâll need to use most allergy eyedrops several times a day.
What Are The Best Over
When possible, its important to avoid or limit contact with the allergen thats causing a stir. And as tempting as it may be, you should also avoid rubbing your eyes. Rubbing could release more histamine, causing them to feel more irritated and itchy.
But, sometimes, medications also come in handy. If youre dealing with a brief, mild case of itchy eyes, you may find the following OTC products helpful:
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What Usually Causes Itchy Eyes
Allergies generally cause itchy eyes. Allergies are your bodys reaction to allergens like pollen, pet dander, and mold.
When allergens make contact with the surface of your eye, mast cells release histamine. Histamine is a natural chemical that your body makes when you have an allergic reaction to something. This histamine release can cause inflammation, which leads to annoying eye-related symptoms.
When this happens, symptoms often include itchy, swollen, or red eyes. Sensitivity to light and burning eyes are also possible.
What Causes Fall Allergies
Aside from the fact that weed pollination is at its annual high right now, there are a few other things that may be causing your post-LDW allergy flare. “Outdoor allergy causes in fall include high mold counts and high pollen counts,” says Dr. Haizen, naming ragweed and mold spores from decaying leaves as two of the biggest culprits. “Indoor allergens like pet dander and dust mites can also cause allergy flare-ups, especially as students return to school and spend more time indoors.”
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When To See A Doctor
Antihistamines and mast cell stabilizers are generally safe to use, Liu says. NSAID drops should only be used under the supervision of a doctor, and decongestants should only be used occasionally.
No matter what type of allergy eye drops you are using, reach out to your doctor if you suddenly start having increased symptoms.
“If you have persistent thickened discharges from the eye, pain in your eye, visual impairment , or if your symptoms are not going away, please see a doctor,” Goldstein says.
What Are The Best Eye Drops For Dogs
Vets Preferred Eye Cleaner for Dog checks all boxes for efficacy and safety and ranks as the best eye drops for dogs available on Amazon at the moment.
There are a few factors that one needs to keep in mind before buying dog eyedrops:
- Gentle on the Eyes. Eye drops for dogs must be easy on the eyes and not cause any form of irritation even if used over a prolonged period of time.
- Non-Toxic Ingredients. When choosing eye drops, check the ingredients. High-quality eye drops are made with safe and non-toxic ingredients.
- Efficient Cleaning Action. Make sure that the drops are efficient in cleaning the eye of any foreign matter or debris that might have entered the eye.
- Bottle or Package. Applying eye drops to a dog can be a tricky job. Make the process simpler by choosing eye drops in an easy-to-use bottle or package.
- Price. Last but not least, check the price of the dog eyedrops. If your dogs eye condition is chronic, the expenses can quickly add up.
Read Also: Allergy Eye Drops Safe For Pregnancy
Types Of Otc Eye Drops
There are two types of artificial tears: eye drops with preservatives and preservative-free eye drops.
Eye drops that contain preservatives have a longer shelf life. The preservatives are chemicals that prevent bacteria from growing. This allows you to use one bottle of eye drops for a length of time.
However, the preservatives in OTC eye drops cause eye irritation to become worse. Eye specialists typically recommend that you use this type of eye drop no more than four times a day.
Preservative-free eye drops come in multiple one-time use vials. After you apply one dose of the drops, you must throw away the vial. You have to purchase this type of eye drop more frequently since it is not shelf stable. Single-use drops are helpful if you have severe dry eyes and need more than four applications per day.
Many ingredients go into a bottle of eye drops, including preservatives and thickeners. These ingredients may irritate your eyes in the long term. Other risks of eye drops include contamination and loose safety seals.
How To Use Eye Drops
There are several types of eye drops formulated for allergy relief. Doctors will mainly prescribe those that contain antihistamines. However, there are also some natural and homeopathic remedies available over the counter. These natural products don’t have any harsh chemicals, nor do they have side effects. Whichever eye drops you are using, here are some tips how to use them in a proper way:
1. Wash your hands.
2. Sit down in front of a mirror so that you can see what you are doing and remove the top from the bottle.
3. Avoid touching the dropper tip against your eye, eyelashes, or any other surface.
4. Tilt your head back and look upwards. Gently pull your lower eyelid down.
5. Hold the dropper above your eye and squeeze one drop inside your lower eyelid.
6. Release the lower eyelid and blink a few times to make sure the whole of the eye is covered by the liquid.
7. Wipe away any excess with a clean tissue.
8. If you need to put in more than one drop, or if you are using another type of eye drop, then you should wait for a few minutes before putting the next drop in. If you do not wait then the first drop may be washed out by the second before it has had time to work.
Your eye-drops have been tested to make sure that they are free from germs when you receive them. In order to keep them in good condition, follow these simple rules:
When not in use, keep the bottle tightly closed in a cool, dark place.
If the dropper is separate, DO NOT put it down on any surface.
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Who Needs Antihistamine Eye Drops
This type of eye drop is usually recommended as the first line of treatment for eye allergies, especially if oral antihistamines are not effective. Most people with itchy, watery eyes caused by histamine reactions from allergens will benefit from short-term use.
For those with underlying eye issues, seek immediate medical attention.
Now Available Over The Counter Lastacaft Provides Eye Allergy Itch Relief In Minutes That Lasts Through 16 Hours
– Itchy allergy eyes affect an estimated 40% of Americans1
– LASTACAFT is a once-daily eye drop that works within minutes against seasonal and year-round allergens to relieve itchy eyes
– Previously available only by prescription, LASTACAFT is now available over the counter nationwide
NORTH CHICAGO, Ill., March 15, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Allergan, an AbbVie company, today announced that LASTACAFT® is now available without a prescription for the estimated 40% of Americans1 who live with ocular allergies. As demonstrated in clinical studies, one drop of LASTACAFT works in as little as three minutes to provide relief from itchy, allergy eyes lasting through 16 hours.2 Following the recent U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval of a complete prescription to over-the-counter switch, the original patented prescription-strength formulation of LASTACAFT is now available online and in retail stores where OTC eye drops are sold.
Outdoor allergens, such as pollen from grass, trees, and weeds, and indoor allergens including pet dander, can trigger itchy eyes. LASTACAFT is an antihistamine eye drop that temporarily relieves itchy eyes due to pollen, ragweed, grass, animal hair, and dander for ages two and older.
LASTACAFT is available in a 5 mL multidose bottle containing a 60-day supply, as well as a twin pack with two 5 mL multidose bottles for a 120-day supply. Visit lastacaft.com to learn more.
LASTACAFT and REFRESH trademarks are the property of AbbVie.
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Choosing The Right Eye Drops For Seasonal Allergies
All eye drops are not the same. When choosing an eye drop, think about what is bothering you most and select one that is best for your symptoms:
- For dry or itchy eyes: Look for lubricant eye drops or artificial tears on the label, from brands that include Refresh, Systane Ultra, or TheraTears.
- For itchy eyes: Look for Ketotifen, from brands that include Alaway or Zaditor or Naphazoline and Pheniramine, by the brands Naphcon A, Opcon-A, or Visine-A.
- For red eyes: Look for Brimonidine, from brands that include Mirvaso or Alphagan P or Naphazoline, by AK-Con, All Clear, or Naphcon or Tetrahydrozoline by brands that include Visine or Opti-Clear.
When To Call Us
We can help diagnose allergies if youre not sure whats causing your childs symptoms. Also, if your child has tried over-the-counter medication for allergies and is still suffering from symptoms, please let us know. There are a number of prescription alternatives that may work better for some people.
As always, please contact us if you have any questions or concerns about your childs allergies, or if youre not sure how to use any over-the-counter medication.
Dr. Kerry McGee is a former Kids Plus provider.
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When Should You See A Healthcare Provider For Itchy Eyes
Itchy eye symptoms dont usually need medical attention. And many people with mild allergies can control their symptoms by simply avoiding allergens or by using an OTC medication.
However, this isnt always the case. You should consider seeing a healthcare provider for testing and treatment as soon as possible if you have any of the following symptoms:
Any noticeable symptoms if you wear contact lenses
How Allergy Eye Drops Can Help
There are many allergy eye drops available including non-prescription, over-the-counter eye drops and medicated drops that require a prescription from your eye doctor.
The best allergy eye drops for you depends on several factors, including the cause of your allergy and the severity of your symptoms.
Some allergy eye drops are formulated for short-term use for acute symptoms, while others are designed for long-term use to prevent symptoms from occurring or reduce your sensitivity to allergens.
The best allergy eye drops are those that work two different ways, says Tammy Than, OD, FAAO, and spokesperson for the American Academy of Optometry.
These drugs work as an antihistamine which helps with the itching, swelling and redness and are also mast cell stabilizers which help prevent further release of chemicals that cause the allergies, she says. So these drops help with current symptoms and prevent future symptoms.
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Prescription Allergy Eye Drops
There are a whole host of options in prescription eye drops, from mast cell inhibitors to antihistamines of different types. If your eyes arent easily soothed by over-the-counter problems, its worth seeing an allergist. One of the many reasonsnot just so you get the right dropsis that they can help you figure out what specifically is causing the reaction and you can try to reduce your exposure to it. Allergy symptoms can be caused by many triggers, from pollens to animal dander to mold and more.
An ophthalmologist can also help you suss out whether additional eye problems are contributing to your discomfort.
These ocular surface symptomsredness, itching, burning, stinging, tearing, drynessthose are very common symptoms that overlap with a lot of other ocular surface diseases like dry eye, meibomian gland dysfunction, blepharitis, a whole bunch of things, says Dr. Starr. So I do think it is important to have a confirmed diagnosis because these allergy drops won’t work a whole lot if your actual problem is dry eye disease or blepharitis or something else.
First What Are The Symptoms Of Eye Allergies
The most common symptom of eye allergy is itching. However, symptoms can range from redness, dryness, watery eyes, and puffiness around the eyes.
Furthermore, eye allergies can flare up at any time but most commonly occur in the spring or fall when allergens are at their highest. For most people, eye allergy symptoms last for 4-8 weeks and primarily during allergy season.
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Best For Dry Eyes: Systane Lubricant Eye Drops
Courtesy of Amazon
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.
While these drops work well for lubricating dry eyes caused by allergies, they can also be used to moisturize gritty or blurry eyes, eye strain or fatigue, and excessive tearing. Theyre basically an all-purpose moisturizing cream for your eyes.
Price at time of publish: $18
Active Ingredients: Polyethylene Glycol 400 0.4%, Propylene Glycol 0.3% | Dosage: 1 or 2 drops in affected eye as needed
Are Eye Drops Or Allergy Pills Better
Allergy eye drops are absorbed directly into the eyes where they are needed. For that reason, full-body side effects are rare. In contrast, oral allergy medications are absorbed and metabolized to reach our blood stream, which can result in full-body side effects like tiredness, dry mouth, constipation, vomiting and headache.
That said, youll typically find three types of eye drops available:
- Non-medicated eye drops
- Eye decongestants
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How To Safely Put Eye Drops In
Whichever eye drop type you decide on, here are some precautions to keep in mind when using eye drops.
- To avoid contaminating the eye drop bottle and introducing germs to the eye, do not touch the tip of the dropper to anything.
- Wash hands before and after use.
- In most instances, contact lenses should be removed before placing drops in the eye. Contacts may be reinserted 10 minutes after the eye drop dose.
- For best results, tilt your head back slightly and pull the lower lid down with your opposite hand to create a pouch for the drop to fall into. Keep the head tilted back and eyes closed for two to three minutes for the best absorption.
- Press down on the tear duct with your finger to keep the medication in place longer and to minimize whole-body side effects.