What are those dark circles beneath my eyes?

More than half of my female patients have darkened areas beneath their eyelids, otherwise known as "allergic shiners".Almost an equal number use eye concealers and foundation make-up for the big "cover up"."How did I get these?" Good question, in many cases this unsightly physical finding is directly related to allergies and to your inflamed sinuses.

The best way to prevent this is to choose your parents wisely! No joke, allergies are generally inherited from our parents and when they affect us we need to act and get proper treatment, which in many cases will improve the "shiners".Allergy injections, medications and sinus care may provide relief allowing your dark circles to lessen.

Another strategy that helps is to place a cool compress at the end of a long work day over your eyes, too.Also, gently irrigating your eyelids once a day with tear-free shampoo can assist in removing airborne pollutants and those pesky seasonal allergens thus lessening your "allergic shiners."

Dr. Clifford W. Bassett is an assistant clinical professor of medicine at the Long Island College Hospital and on the faculty of NYU School of Medicine.He is the current vice chair for public education committee of the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. No information in this blog is intended to diagnose or treat any condition.

Dr. Clifford Bassett is an adult and pediatric allergy specialist, and diplomate of the American Board of Allergy and Immunology. He is the medical director of Allergy and Asthma Care of NY.   Bassett is a clinical assistant professor of medicine and on the teaching faculty of NYU School of Medicine and NYU Langone Medical Center, and faculty at Cornell University Medical College. Follow him on Twitter.