Allergies causing my eyes to water and itch

My Eyes are Itchy and Watery, What’s Going On?

By on

Even before we see the sunny weather, blooming flowers, and greening trees, there are a few sure signs that spring is near. You’re more likely to feel the season change versus seeing it with your own eyes. The problem is, sometimes, it’s your eyes that get hit the worst with the first signs of spring.

My eyes are itchy and watery, what’s going on?

Considering the time of year, chances are your eyes are reacting to pollen, according to Ari Fartash, OD. Allergens stimulate the histamines located in the eyes causing the watery, itchy and red eyes, said Fartash. Pet dander, dust, dirt and cigarette smoke can also cause a similar reaction to plant allergies.

So, what can you do to keep your symptoms at bay?

Avoid allergens. Stay indoors to limit your exposure to common allergens you are sensitive to. If you do go outdoors, wear wrap-around sunglasses to help shield your eyes from pollen, ragweed, dust, etc.

Remove contacts. Contact lenses can attract allergens and accumulate throughout the day. Consider wearing your glasses or switching to daily disposable contacts during allergy season.

Over-the counter eye drops. There are a number of allergy drops that are formulated to relieve itchiness, redness, and watery eyes.

Prescription medications. If the symptoms won’t go away you might need something stronger. Visit your nearest VSP-network doctor to discuss if a prescription medication is right for you.

Watch Dr. Fartash explain her favorite allergy relief remedy in the latest edition of #AskAnEyeDoc below. Remember, if you have an eye-related question, be sure to comment below.

Disclaimer: Information received through VSP Vision Care’s social media channels does not constitute medical advice, medical recommendations, diagnosis or treatment.


  • Linnea says:

    Three years ago I started using an excellent brand of essential oils. When my eyes are itchy and watery, I use Frankincense essential oil around my eyes and lavender essential oil under my eyes. That has been such a game changer for my eyes when hit with allergies. Before essential oils, it was hit and miss.

    • Nancy Lhamon says:

      I am fairly new to essential oils. I was plagued with cold after cold startin in November every year. I was give a kt as a gift and dabbled enough to come up with using RC diluted in coconut oil to prevent colds &/or lessen the impact of a cold. I also experience itchy watery eyes. Do you dilute the Frankincense & Lavender before applying? If so, what is your formula? I would like to try it. TU!

      • Linnea says:

        The brand of essential oils makes these two EO’s in “touch rollers” which already come pre-diluted. I have no idea what the ratio is though. If there was a way of sharing my email without it being published on this forum, I would. i just looked up your name on Facebook and there are two people on there.

  • Diane says:

    I wake up every morning year around, with itchy watery eyes. Can this still be an allergy?

    • Angelina F. says:

      Hi Diane,
      We’d recommend consulting your eye doctor to address your specific concern. If needed, you can find a VSP network doctor near you using the Find A Doctor search on our website.
      Angelina F., VSP

    • Margaret says:

      Might be your pillows if you haven’t changed them lately. I’ve heard you should get new pillows every year or two. Good luck. It happens to me too, but not all the time. Any time of year though. I take an allergy pill and it usually clears up within a few hours. I tried changing my pillows and so far so good.

    • Carol says:

      Diane, my allergist recommended throwing my pillows in the dryer once a week on LOW setting for 20 minutes. It helped me.

    • Andrea says:

      Maybe it’s your soap or face lotion. Or, hand lotion that is transferred to the eye almost unconsciously.

  • Linda says:

    Can the product “Eye Love” help the dry eye? I’ve tried over the counter and there’s just not enough lubricant in them for me. Are there chemicals in Eye Love that would do the eye more harm than good?

    • Angelina F. says:

      Hi Linda,
      It’s best to check with your doctor for specific treatment options. If needed, you can find a VSP network eye doctor near you using the Find a Doctor Search on our website:
      Angelina F., VSP

  • RON HARPER says:

    whata iss the best overthecounter eye ddrops for the season

  • Leslie says:

    What about Dry-Eye syndrome?

  • Joy Perrin says:

    What an OBNOXIOUS hectic video, irritating voice, and redundant information.

  • Sonny Chadha says:

    This article contains some of the most informative content I’ve read in quite some time. The points of this content are clear-cut and engaging. I think much like this writer.

  • Harvey says:

    Great article! I have itchy eyes and this article can be very helpful for me.Thanks and keep sharing.

  • Tara Hough says:

    If you experienced watery and itchy eyes make sure to consult an eye doctor as soon as possible. To avoid serious effects.

  • Nicole Maer says:

    Seasonal allergies are often triggered by pollen, which causes the itching. But, there are other symptoms to be aware of such as redness, burning, and discharge. People who suffer with chronic SAC or PAC may also have dark circles under their eyes called shiners as well as swollen eyelids and light sensitivity.

  • Tawnya says:

    ever since i went to the eye doctor to get my exam and glasses in Feb2018 i’ve had a few stys in my left eye and now even though i dont see any there my eye has been itching and huring for over a week. i’m gonna make a visit with hin asap.

  • Frances Drewniak says:

    My eyes are extremely dry, and drops, antibiotics does not help, drops are very temporary relief like 5 minutes. The extreme dry eye condition makes me suseptible to infections looking for any suggestions, light sensitivity and they hurt so bad that it feels like I have charlie horses in both eyes. Been to several doctors and nothing helps

    • Paula says:

      My opthamolagist recommends using a warm moist washcloth over the eyes and drumming your fingertips lightly on the lash line for 2 minutes 4-6 times a day. I usually only make it two times morning and night but it definitely makes a difference. I also use ocusoft cleansing pads occasionally to really clean the gunk out afterward. the massage opens up the meiboian glands so that tears can flow to lubricate the eyes naturally. He also says you can use refresh eyedrops as many times a day as you need for relief and get enough omega 3s in your diet. I hope that helps-good luck!

  • Bruce says:

    One of the MD’s at my medical center specializes in allergies, she prescribed Pataday, an excellent eye drop for addressing allergies in the eyes.

  • Cedric King says:

    What can be done to reduce swelling of under eyes patchiness and PUFFINESS??

  • Leave a Reply to RON HARPER Cancel reply

    Your email address will not be published.

    You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>