Hay Fever & Eye Drops in Japan ー 花粉症と日本の目薬

At least twice a year, I find myself suffering from dry & red eyes. This seems to hit me a lot more common in Japan. In the States, I'd occasionally suffer from dry eyes for a couple weeks in the year, and then it would soon go away. I hardly ever needed to use eye drops or any medicine. I thought I had no major allergies back home. Once I came to Japan I found out about the horrors of "花粉症"(Kafunsho) or hay fever.

This is especially bad in Tochigi prefecture as I live close to Nikko. The highway to Nikko is lined with many cedar trees that were planted when the famous shogun Tokugawa Ieyasu was being led to his burial site. Every Spring, the hay fever hits, and to my surprise, again in the Fall. I am not as affected as many people are. They suffer from sneezing, dry/red eyes and have to wear a mask or even allergy glasses to protect their eyes throughout the day.

Facing this reality, I've had to buy eye drops frequently in Japan. Now eye drops are a bit different here than back in the States. You can find Visine, but just like with other Japanese brands there are many different versions. There seems to be varying levels of intensity, and on the higher level drops a cooling menthol agent is added. This can be quite a shock to those not used to putting that sort of medicine in your eyes. The only way I can compare it is similar to the time I accidentally put contact solution in my eyes instead of regular eye drops. My eyes turned bright red and I felt them stinging immensely. Soon however, this affect wore off and it was actually quite soothing. Now, this is the only brand I buy (I buy the allergy guard strength so help fight off the allergies). The cooling doesn't affect my eyes as it used to and it actually is quite soothing. But if you're ever in Japan and are in need of eye drops, be careful of what type you buy, as you might be in for a surprise!


Shea Roberts
Hay Fever & Eye Drops in Japan ー 花粉症と日本の目薬 Hay Fever & Eye Drops in Japan ー 花粉症と日本の目薬 Reviewed by Shea Roberts on 8:21 AM Rating: 5
Post a Comment