Read below about watery eye discharge, including causes and common questions. Or get a personalized analysis of your watery eye discharge from our A.I. health assistant. At Buoy, we build tools that help you know what’s wrong right now and how to get the right care.

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6 Potential Watery Eye Discharge Causes

Disclaimer: The article does not replace an evaluation by a physician. Information on this page is provided as an information resource only, and is not to be used or relied on for any diagnostic or treatment purposes.

  1. 1.New - Onset Seasonal Allergies

    Allergic rhinitis, is an overreaction by the immune system to allergens in the air. While pollen often causes allergies, other culprits include dust, animal dander, and mold.

    Allergies are often seasonal.

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    sore throat, congestion, cough with dry or watery sputum, mucous dripping in the back of the throat, fatigue
    Symptoms that never occur with new-onset seasonal allergies:
    fever, yellow-green runny nose, chills, muscle aches
    Urgency:
    Self-treatment
  2. 2.Bacterial Conjunctivitis

    Bacterial conjunctivitis is one of the most common eye problems. It occurs from an infection of the whites of the eye.

    With treatment, bacterial conjunctivitis resolves in a a few days.

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    sore throat, eye redness, eye itch, watery eye discharge, eye redness
    Symptoms that always occur with bacterial conjunctivitis:
    eye redness
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  3. 3.Chronic Allergic Conjunctivitis

    Itchy, red, swelling of the whites of the eyes caused by allergies to any number of things (like pollen, hay, etc).

    Seasonal

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    watery eye discharge, eye redness, itch in both eyes, severe eye itch, swollen eyelid
    Symptoms that always occur with chronic allergic conjunctivitis:
    itch in both eyes, eye redness, severe eye itch
    Symptoms that never occur with chronic allergic conjunctivitis:
    vision changes, lump in front of the ear
    Urgency:
    Self-treatment

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  4. 4.Chronic Allergies

    Allergies are an overreaction by the immune system to something that does not bother most other people. Many people who have allergies are sensitive to pollen, but other things such as dust mites, animal dander, cockroaches, and mold can also cause a reaction.

    Seasonal

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    fatigue, irritability, trouble sleeping, runny nose, congestion
    Symptoms that never occur with chronic allergies:
    fever, yellow-green runny nose, chills, muscle aches
    Urgency:
    Self-treatment
  5. 5.Viral Conjunctivitis

    Pink eye conjunctivitis is an infection of the whites of the eyes by a virus. It is extremely infectious and can spread from person-to-person easily.

    Sometimes eye irritation and discharge may get worse for a few days before getting better, but usually symptoms resolve within a week.

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    eye redness, eye itch, sensitivity to light, feeling of something in the eye, watery eye discharge
    Symptoms that always occur with viral conjunctivitis:
    eye redness
    Urgency:
    Self-treatment
  6. 6.Acute Allergic Conjunctivitis

    Itchy, red, swelling of the whites of the eyes can be caused by allergies to any number of things (like pollen, hay, etc).

    This typically occurs every season

    Rarity:
    Uncommon
    Top Symptoms:
    eye itch, eye redness, watery eye discharge, itch in both eyes, eye redness
    Symptoms that always occur with acute allergic conjunctivitis:
    eye itch, eye redness
    Symptoms that never occur with acute allergic conjunctivitis:
    lump in front of the ear, vision changes
    Urgency:
    Phone call or in-person visit

Questions Your Doctor May Ask About Watery Eye Discharge

  • Q.Any fever today or during the last week?
  • Q.Are you experiencing chills?
  • Q.Have you been feeling more tired than usual, lethargic or fatigued despite sleeping a normal amount?
  • Q.Do you have a stuffy nose?

If you've answered yes to one or more of these questions, try our watery eye discharge symptom checker to find out more.

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Watery Eye Discharge Symptom Checker Statistics

  • People who have experienced watery eye discharge have also experienced:

    • 14% Runny Nose
    • 10% Nose Itch
    • 4% History of Allergies
  • People who have experienced watery eye discharge had symptoms persist for:

    • 35% Less Than a Week
    • 32% Less Than a Day
    • 17% Over a Month
  • People who have experienced watery eye discharge were most often matched with:

    • 13% Bacterial Conjunctivitis
    • 13% New - Onset Seasonal Allergies
  • Source: Aggregated and anonymized results from visits to the Buoy AI health assistant (check it out by clicking on “Take Quiz”).

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