Pharmacist warns against one common hay fever habit

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A pharmacist has said that repeatedly rubbing your eyes can cause serious eye problems.

symptoms of hay feverallergic to Polleninclude sneezing, coughing, rashes, blocked nose, Headacheand itchy red eyes which means it is natural to touch and rub your eyes in moments of discomfort.

But community pharmacist Sultan Dajani, from Eyecare brand gold eyeSaid mirror How Allergies Can cause more serious eye problems.

Dajani said: “When we encounter an allergen, either by inhaling, swallowing, or simply through skin contact, the body goes into fight mode and the immune system reacts to the substance.

“A protein known as IgE is produced to go after the allergen, and a chemical called histamine is released into the blood – and this is what creates the symptoms we usually experience.

“So, really when we have these kinds of symptoms the body is acting up and doing its job to get rid of the allergen.

“Although we need our bodies to respond in this way, the symptoms can actually affect our general well-being, lower our immune system and interfere with everyday activities.”

Dajani explained that repeatedly touching our eyes can open up the possibility of further eye problems or infections such as styes, conjunctivitis or blepharitis.

hay fever is an allergic reaction to pollen or dust

(Getty Images/iStockphoto)

“Our hands come into contact with most everything, from people to surfaces, making it easy to transfer bacteria and germs to our face – and if we’re reaching for our eyes, a simple rubbing of the eyes can lead to a few more easy to develop

Problems that can arise from this include a stye, which is a swollen lump on the eyelid or near the eyelashes.

Dajani explained: “People are more likely to get styes during allergy season. Allergies are known risk factors for styes. Along with experiencing the symptoms of itchy eyes it can feel impossible not to rub them.

One problem that may also be related to rubbing the eyes is conjunctivitis, an infection of the eye that is often caused by viruses or bacteria.

Dajani said that blepharitis, when oil glands near the base of the eyelashes become clogged, causing eye irritation and redness, can also be triggered by constantly touching or rubbing the eyes.