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Memphis, TN
A 31-year-old female asked:

Why do my eyes constantly water when i have a cold or allergy attack?

2 doctor answers2 doctors weighed in
Dr. Mark Loury
ENT and Head and Neck Surgery 40 years experience
Nerve interaction: There are connections between the nasal sensory nerves and the lacrimal glands that produce tears. Therefore anything that irritates or inflames the nose induces tear production. That explains the reduced tearing when nasal steroids are used to treat allergy. The steroids reduce the allergy response and nasal inflammation with less tearing. Oral and topical antihistamines will reduce itching.
Dr. Richard Hector
Ophthalmology 10 years experience
Blocked exit : The exit/drainage routes for your tears may be swollen closed by allergic conjunctivitis. There may be reflex tearing that over loads your tear drainage system even if the exit routes are not swollen closed. If your nose is also running, the exit routes are working and it is the excess reflex tearing.

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Similar questions

A 27-year-old member asked:

Why do allergies make my eyes water?

2 doctor answers13 doctors weighed in
Dr. Sean McGhee
Allergy and Immunology 24 years experience
Immune reactions: The conjunctiva, the thin membrane on the inner surface of the eyelids and the white part of the eye, has lots of mast cells, which are the cells that react to allergens. So just as you get an allergic reaction in the nose, you get an allergic reaction in the eye as well. The eye is also connected to the nose through a small duct, and sometimes allergens can travel back and forth.
Last updated Jan 29, 2017
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