Gransnet forums


Mysterious eye problem. Could it be?

(54 Posts)
MissAdventure Mon 08-Feb-21 21:17:18

Since the start of lockdown, I have been having problems with my eyes.

I bought some eyedrops from the chemist for hayfever, as I do sometimes get little spates of it, though it's usually an itchy nose.

Since then, I've been struggling constantly with red eyes, which water, but don't particularly itch.

I've tried - tired eye drops.

Dry eye drops.

Cold compresses.

Eye mist.

Infected eye drops.

Prescription infected eye drops, and ointment.

Just today I've picked up another prescription for antihistamines and more drops, as my nose is now becoming red and swollen, alongside my red, piggy, eyes, and pockets of fluid at each side of my nose.

Anyway; if you've read this far, it has just occurred to me today that I may be allergic to the face masks! It's the one "new" constant!

rubysong Mon 08-Feb-21 21:47:26

Are you using handcream? I have been having itchy eyes but have stopped using handcream and they are now better. I know Boris told us not to but lots of us do touch our faces without realising it. It is the perfume which causes problems.

fevertree Mon 08-Feb-21 21:50:07

What sort of mask do you have? I have a few fabric ones that are really comfy (and others that are not so comfy). I don't like the disposable ones.

fevertree Mon 08-Feb-21 21:51:09

Apologies I meant to add, I saw some anti-allergy masks for sale somewhere, would it be worth trying that?

SynchroSwimmer Mon 08-Feb-21 22:01:05

I have had the same problem, in the end I the hospital said I had used so many differing drops that I had developed an allergy to the actual preservatives.

Had to have a course of steroid eye drops, and told to use preservative free drops going forwards.

Hylo-Tear is one brand, others are avaliable

Also intermittently using a microwaved heated eye mask to keep my tear ducts unblocked and functioning.

MissAdventure Mon 08-Feb-21 22:27:43

I have to use the medical disposable masks for work.
I don't use hand cream, but I'm very grateful for any suggestions.
It's so wearing, having to battle everyday to make my eyes look halfway presentable, and while they aren't itchy or sore, really, they're uncomfortable.
By about 11am every day, they're starting to weep and turn bright red.

MissAdventure Mon 08-Feb-21 22:41:28

Thank you SynchroSwimmer.
I feel that is what may have happened with me.
I always think each lot of drops are going to work. Ever the optimist!

Callistemon Mon 08-Feb-21 23:15:23

Have you actually seen the GP, MissA or are they prescribing over the phone without looking at your eyes?

Can you ask if you can wear a shield instead of the masks at work; you could be allergic to something in the material.
Or ask if your place of work could order some hypoallergenic masks for you (latex free) eg:

MissAdventure Mon 08-Feb-21 23:18:21

I haven't seen anyone yet.
I've had two phone appts with the prescribing nurse.
She has said if this doesn't work then I will need an appointment, and I'm inclined to agree.
I've been struggling for almost a year.

Callistemon Mon 08-Feb-21 23:26:05

Actually, looking at the list of what has gone into your eyes over the last year, I'm not surprised they're protesting.
Poor, sore eyes. If it was hay fever shouldn't happen all year and an infection should clear up after antibiotic drops.

You could try something as simple as cool boiled water when you get home from work and ask about the visor.

NotSpaghetti Mon 08-Feb-21 23:26:24

Have you had covid or covid symptoms MissAdventure?

annodomini Mon 08-Feb-21 23:32:36

In the dark ages, my granny used to swear by cold tea (without milk or sugar) for sore, itchy eyes. She soaked cotton wool in it and applied it to her eyelids. Not sure what kind of tea - English breakfast, most likely.

Chestnut Mon 08-Feb-21 23:38:32

I definitely remember red eyes being flagged up in the early days as being a symptom of covid so maybe you should have a test.

MissAdventure Mon 08-Feb-21 23:44:05

I test myself weekly for covid, and I've also had the antibody test and don't appear to have had it.

My eyes are just one of lots of things going wrong with me lately.

I'm falling apart at the seams, I think!

I am being fastidious about keeping my eyes clean and so on. The mask is all I can think it might be.

MissAdventure Mon 08-Feb-21 23:47:10

I have to wear a mask and visor when dealing with "splashes" at work, or when cleaning close to people.

I'm surprised I don't frighten them away! smile

Shinamae Mon 08-Feb-21 23:49:18

My dad used to soak his eyes in a solution made with boracic powder and warm water, he swore by it and never had any trouble with his eyes..

NellG Tue 09-Feb-21 00:01:31

I have a similar problem, I think caused by masks and wearing glasses. I've had it checked by two different opticians ( the second because my eye test was due, not because I doubted the first). basically it was dry eye and blepharitis in my case. So, daily cleaning with sterile eye wipes, heat mask and Hyco-san drops- which are preservative free.

Oh and an Omega 7 supplement ( sea buckthorn) helps with general drying out!

As long as I keep it all up it's bearable.

MissAdventure Tue 09-Feb-21 00:02:47

That sounds scary! shock
I think I'm at the end of the line with having a go myself (have tried cold tea, and saline solution, too)

MissAdventure Tue 09-Feb-21 00:05:06

Ah, NellG I'm similar.

I start something new, and it seems to work for about a day, but I think it's just because I'm regularly tending to my eyes.

NellG Tue 09-Feb-21 00:13:22

MissAdventure Blimmin horrible isn't it? I've had it with my eyes streaming, my nose swollen and streaming. All seemed a bit incongruous given they told me it was dry eye and my eyes were watering, all to do with lipid layers I think. Anyway, I hope you find something that works for longer than a day. Best of luck.

MissAdventure Tue 09-Feb-21 00:15:02

Any road up... I'm going to have a look for some allergy free masks, a heat mask (amazon?) and an omega 7 supplement.

Thank you all. I feel better just for having a moan.

MissAdventure Tue 09-Feb-21 00:19:56

It is blimmin orrible.
Sometimes it's like acid coming out of my eyes.
It actually leaves the skin it touches red and sore.

Kerenhappuch Tue 09-Feb-21 00:33:09

I got terribly itchy eyes at the start of the first lockdown, and realised it was the cheap handwash we were using. I react really strongly to scented soaps etc. I bought some better handwash and the itching stopped.

lemsip Tue 09-Feb-21 08:01:29

leave your eyes alone for four days at least. You could have tried to many remedies. let things return to there norm.

Look up Bletharitis, which could cause red eyes. worth a look.

Urmstongran Tue 09-Feb-21 08:17:10

MissA I had similar last month. Dry eyes, so itchy some days I wanted to rub them away. Some morning on waking they were sticky. Anyway, long story short, took myself off to my opticians a couple of weeks ago. She checked me out thoroughly and told me I had a condition called blepharitis. Google it? She said she was pleased I’d not been using eye drops as some had preservatives.

She advised twice a week to apply clean cotton pads dipped in warm but not hot water. Hold against the eyes for about 10 minutes to warm the tiny ducts near the eyelashes. On the last warm press, very gently massage the eye.

Apparently we have tear ducts (water) but also oily ducts which can become blocked as we age. We need the oily component to stop redness and irritation.

She said it should clear in a couple of weeks (it has) but it might well recur as it’s a chronic condition.

I hope this helps! Good luck. x