27 Effective Home Remedies For Red Eyes Infections

updated: 07/31/2019

We’ve all experienced red, bloodshot eyes at times, which may occur in one or both eyes. Red eyes may result in eye pain, itching, blurry vision, and swollen eyes, or may cause no disturbance at all. However, besides following the doctor’s prescription, most people still obscure ways to treat this condition themselves. Today’s article is going to introduce to you the top 27 natural and effective home remedies for red eyes using simple ingredients, but before that, you had better understand some necessary information about this problem. That way, you can use our home remedies in a proper awareness to obtain the best results.

What Is Red Eye?

Red eye is a term used to define red and bloodshot eyes. It occurs when the blood vessels on the surface of the eye and sclera are broken or dilated[1], or sometimes due to conjunctival hemorrhage. Redness of the eyes sometimes may accelerate a severe eye condition that requires specific diagnosis and treatment from eye practitioner. The red eye could be due to illness, injury, eye infections, or other diseases such as allergies. Treatment for red eyes varies, depending on its cause.

Remedies for red eyes comprise of rest, cold compresses over your eyes with the benefit of common ingredients you can find at home or unique properties from traditional herbal remedies.

What Are Causes Of Red Eyes?

  • Conjunctivitis:

Conjunctivitis[2] is one of the most common eye infections and known as “pink eye.” It’s an infection or swelling in the thin outer membrane that lines part of your eyeball, caused by the inflammation of blood vessels in your conjunctiva. This forms the red or pink color on your eyes, which may be contagious, mainly occur among school children. A reddish-pink eye is a telltale sign of conjunctivitis.

There are different types of conjunctivitis — and therefore different ways to treat pink eye. To get a correct diagnosis, be sure to visit your eye doctor regularly.

  • Dry eyes

This syndrome occurs when an insufficient quantity or quality of tears are produced in your tear glands to lubricate your eyes. Getting dry eyes[3] for an extended period may cause inflammation and irritation on the surface of your eye, leads to the red appearance of your eyes.

  • Contact lenses:

One of the leading causes for a red eye is over-wearing or less caring for your contact lenses[4], which leads to the expansion of irritating microbes on your eyeball. Eye infection from keratitis and fungal while wearing contact lenses could be a severe sign of forming red eyes. If you have chronic dry eye syndrome, a low-fitting and underqualified contact lenses may worsen and reduce the amount of oxygen away from the cornea and restrict average tear production. In this case, please remove your contacts immediately and visit your eye doctor.

  • Monitor vision syndrome:

Fatigue eyes always go along with the habit of staring at your computer screen for extended periods, which causes burning and redness. In daily life, your eyes have to work overtime in front of the screen without proper rest, your less blinking will dry out the surface of your eye, provide a condition for eye dryness and redness[5].

  • Allergy:

“Allergy Eyes”[6] are often the term referred to “red eyes,” given that red eye is a telltale symptom of an allergic reaction. This symptom may be explained by the response of the immune system, when it reacts to a foreign substance, such as dust, makeup chemical, pet dander or pollen, your body will release histamine as a part of inflammatory response to fight off allergens, causing enlargement of blood vessels in your eyes, as a result of red and watery eye. Take advice and medication from the doctor to avoid allergens in which you are sensitive.

  • Eye injury

Another reason for red, bloodshot eyes may derive from trauma[7] or damage to the eyes, in some cases together with subconjunctival hemorrhage. Blood vessels, as an inflammatory response to injury, enlarge to allow more blood flow and quickly heal the injury area. This dilation is what causes red eyes that should be treated as a medical emergency.

  • Corneal ulcer:

A corneal ulcer[8] is one form of potentially sight-threatening cornea infections. It is typically caused by an untreated eye infection or trauma to the eye. In addition to red eyes causation, this symptom always contains eye pain and reduces your vision, which should be treated as an emergency.

  • Uveitis:

Red eyes are typically found from the inflammation in the middle layer of the eye, which is called Uveitis[9]. This symptom is also characterized by visual disturbance (blurry, floater) and light sensitivity. The causes of Uveitis are varied, most common are eye infections, trauma, and injury, or systemic autoimmune disorders. In many cases, the primary purpose of uveitis is still unknown. Without first treated methods, uveitis may nourish the detached retina, cataracts, and high intraocular pressure, which may lead to permanent vision loss.

  • Glaucoma:

In most cases, it’s challenging to realize as glaucoma[10] is asymptomatic and gradual when it first develops. When the eyes appear to be pain associated with bright-red color, accompanied by vision loss and nausea, this could be a sign of angle-closure glaucoma, which is a sight-threatening condition.

  • Ocular herpes:

Also called eye herpes, ocular herpes[11] is a recurrent viral infection caused by the type 1 herpes simplex virus. Herpes of the eye may cause eye redness, eye pain, swollen eyes, watery discharge, and light sensitivity. If left untreated, this symptom may cause scarring of the cornea. In the worst situation, a cornea transplant is required to restore vision.

  • Cold and flu:

Common symptoms of cold or flu include bloodshot eyes[12] along with running nose. Red eyes in this situation are caused by a sinus infection or blocked sinuses when you sneeze and cough.

  • Pregnancy:

During pregnancy, hormonal changes may affect your eyes, making them red as well as dry[13] and itchy. In some cases, pregnancy may also adjust the shape of your cornea, which might lead to blurry vision or irritation to contact lenses. However, these problems are usually temporary and sorted out entirely within weeks or months after childbirth.

  • Smoking:

Did you know that smoking harms your vision? Besides significantly raising the risk of age-related macular degeneration, lung cancer, tobacco smoke may cause eye redness[14] and dryness, produce cataracts and uveitis. Bloodshot eyes may occur if you smoke marijuana since the primary psychoactive ingredient in marijuana may cause a significant increase of blood vessels on the eye and lead to several hours or longer of eye redness.

  • Whitening eye drops:

Eye drops purchased from pharmacies for red-eye treatment contain vasoconstrictors, which are chemicals that shrink the blood vessels on the eye surface to reduce redness. If you abuse whitening eye drops over a long term, it may be harmful as many people regularly using this medicine resist in its whitening effects and find it hard to give up but overuse more and more. In the worst situation, using eye whitening drops continually may aggravate the eye redness. If you stop using this drop, it will lead to a condition called rebound hyperemia[14].

  • Environmental hazards:

Living or working in dusty air, smoke, sand, wood filings, and excessive sun exposure[15] may harm your health as well as your eyes. Underestimation on wearing protective eyewear such as safety glasses when in the unprotected environment is the leading cause of eye irritation, which leads to severe diseases.

  • Insufficient sleep:

The appearance of puffy eyes and dark circles indicates that you haven’t had enough sleep. Eye strain from inadequate sleep is a dead giveaway that will make the red color of your eyes[16].

What Symptoms Are Associated With Red Eyes?

Instead of the underlying causes, red eyes may be associated with additional symptoms when:

  • You have painful eyes with red color on them
  • You feel your eyes/ eyelids are itchy
  • You suffer from swollen eyelid and discharge, which could be thick due to watery.
  • Your eyes fight against foreign sensation including light sensitivity (photophobia), burning sensation, Stye or red bump on the eyelid, contact lenses which result in eyelid skin crusts (Dermatitis) and falling out eyelashes (Blepharitis)
  • Eyelashes fall out. This is typically associated with blepharitis.

When To See The Doctor?

If your red eyes are associated with pain and severe symptoms, consider it with urgent treatment, which is necessary to see your eye doctor and get a medical emergency. If you wear contacts lenses and find those symptoms happen to your eyes, remove them immediately and visit your doctor. Never underestimate the doctor’s appointment even if you actively use our home remedies. In the worst case, surgeries are required to ensure your eyes recovery in the best condition.

There, you have discovered some information about red eyes; it is time to find out what the best natural home remedies for red eyes are. Here are some easy-to-do tips that help alleviate bloodshot eyes without drugs. Take a look at TrueRemedies.com!

Top 27 Effective Home Remedies For Red Eyes Infections

1. Cold And Warm Compress

By wrapping a few compresses and keep them over your eyes, the red eye symptoms will be relieved effectively and quickly[17] as they help constrict blood vessels in the red eyes and reduce inflammation and swelling. What is the best? Well, you can do it at home without the need for any equipment. Here is what you need to do:

  • Dip a washcloth in a bowl of cold/warm water then wring it to release extra water.
  • Place the cold/warm compress over your eyes. This can take 5 to 10 minutes.
  • After that, rewet the cloth and repeat the process.
  • After applying warm compresses, you can also wash the eyelids using baby shampoo to erase the crusts.
  • Another simple way to prevent red eyes is wrapping some ice cubes in the cotton cloth and holding them over your eyes for a few seconds.
2. Reduce On Screen Time

To prevent aggravating red eyes, you must reduce the hours in front of the TV and computer screen as well as handy devices like smartphones, tablet, and IPad. Continuously spending long hours on these screens may cause eyes dryness[18], which is the main reason for red-eye.

Remember, always adjust your seat as well as your eyes in appropriate distance from the screen. Keep your eyes 20-30 cm away from the screen. Allow your eyes to focus on things at varying distances and of various sizes when you move your eyes away from the screen. For a better condition, wear anti-glare glasses that are designed specially to reduce eye strain from monitor reflection.

3. Rose Water

home remedies for red eyes

Rose water is extracted from Rosa Damascena contains anti-inflammatory and anti-infective properties[19] [20], which is very beneficial if you use it as an eye drop for eye conjunctivitis treatment. Follow these steps for better use of rose water as one of the home remedies for red eyes:

Method 1:

  • Steep a cotton ball in rose water
  • Place it over your eyelid for 10-15 minutes
  • Repeat this process twice a day until the redness fades away.

Method 2:

  • Dip a cucumber slice in rose water and then place them over your eyelids. The water content in cucumber and cooling effect of rose water are what reduce eye redness.

Method 3:

  • Use rose water as eye drops. Put 2-3 drops of this liquid into each of your eyes or wash your eyes with it.
4. Tea Bags

You can use tea bags as a remedy to treat eyes infection. The tannin compounds in tea reduce eye swelling as they conclude antimicrobial properties[21]. Since many green, black, and herbal teas provide significant benefits, this traditional relaxing remedy with cold, damp tea bags is no longer a secret to decrease the inflammation of redness. These few top contenders, which are recommended to help reduce your eye pain, includes rose petals, catnip, chamomile flowers, eyebright, and blackberries leaves. You can follow this simple remedy by chilling used tea bags and place them over your eyelids. Use Chamomile tea bags to obtain the best results.

5. Cucumber

Cucumber may diminish the swelling of red eyes effectively as it has the properties of anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effect[22]. Keep a cucumber cool in a fridge for 10-15 minutes and slice it up. Place one slice over each eyelid for a few minutes to get rid of swollen and red eyes.

6. Balanced Diet

Keep a balanced diet that is rich in Omega 3[23] and Omega 6 fatty acids (nuts, flax seeds, salmon, etc.). Add vitamin B2, B6 and B12[24] to your daily meal with foods such as eggs, fresh vegetables, cereal, tuna fish, and yogurt. Besides, cauliflower, spinach, celery, cabbage, broccoli, and fruits like oranges and strawberries are rich in Vitamin C and vitamin E, lutein, and zeaxanthin, which are good for your eye health.

Note: To maintain a healthy equilibrium, about 30 mg of each vitamin intake in 2- 3 times a day may help get rid of nutrition deficiency that causes an eye infection.

7. Milk

Milk has anti-inflammatory properties that are found in amino acids, which may alleviate eye redness. These two ways are how you make use of milk protein[25] to combat redness in eyes at home:

  • Mix equal quantities of milk and honey and pour 2-3 drops into each of your eyes.
  • Soak a cotton pad in raw cold milk, rub it over your eyes for 15 minutes at least two times a day.
8. Raw Potatoes

Potatoes have a high content of Vitamin E that keeps diseases and eye infections out of reach. Also, it may help shrink blood vessels around your eyes thanks to the astringent properties[26]. That is why it is listed as one of the powerful home remedies for red eyes. Additionally, potato is useful at soothing irritation and pain caused by red eyes.

  • Keep thin slices of potatoes in the fridge for 12 hours.
  • After chilled, put the slices out and place it over your eyes for 15-20 minutes.
  • Repeat this method every before bed for the best result.
9. Fenugreek

home remedies for red eyes

Steroidal Saponin, which is Trigonella foenum-graecum Diosgenin presented in fenugreek, may avert inflammation[27]. Fenugreek may also relieve irritation caused by eye redness and protect your eyes from infectious elements thanks to antimicrobial, antiseptic, and antioxidant properties[28]. Two methods are given for you to treat eyes redness at home quickly:

Method 1:

  • Soak a handful of fenugreek seeds in water overnight for about 7 to 8 hours
  • Grind them to make a smooth paste
  • Apply this solution to your closing eyes and keep it for 15-20 minutes
  • Wash your eyes and repeat the procedure for 2-3 days.

Method 2:

  • Use a cloth to wrap and warm these seeds
  • Apply it directly to the eyelids to reduce swelling and pain.
10. Vegetable Juice

The vegetable is a rich source of minerals and nutrition that may prevent eye redness and keep eyes healthy[29], such as carrot which contains Vitamin A and Beta carotene[30] and spinach with vitamins like Lutein and Zeaxanthin[31]. Carrot and spinach juice should be included regularly to maintain better health and control infection.

11. Fennel Seeds

Fennel seeds provide excellent eye tonic. Adding fennel seeds to foods is an excellent way to prevent the eyes from being inflamed and help them recover healthily after overcoming serious issues thanks to its abundant content of vitamin C, flavonoids, and amino acids[32]. Most people eat them raw to improve eye health, or use the alternative methods below to reduce eye infection:

Method 1:

  • Apply fennel seeds directly to your eyes as eye drops or compress.

Method 2:

  • Boil ½ tbsp of fennel seeds in 1 cup of water for 25 minutes
  • Strain the mixture and allow it to cool through a nylon stocking, coffee filter, or fine cloth
  • Wash your eyes using this water for several days.
12. Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is essential for the effect of curing a bacterial infection, as it contains malic acid[33]. The malic acid intensively helps triggering red color and itching in your eyes.

  • Mix 1 tbsp of apple cider vinegar in a cup of water
  • Dip a cotton ball in the mixture
  • Clean your eyes with it. Repeat the process twice for several days until your eyes recover from the redness condition.
13. Baking Soda

Bicarbonate[34] – the key ingredient of baking soda – is said to have the ability to slow many eye-related diseases. It also helps to lower the sensitivity to light and eye infections – two leading causes of red eyes

You can rinse your eyes using a mixture of ¼ tbsp of baking soda in a ½ cup of water. Try to keep your eyes open while processing this method to get the best result. After that, please lie down and close your eyes. Rest and relax for 10 minutes, then rinse your face with fresh water.

14. Witch Hazel

home remedies for red eyes

Witch Hazel has astringent properties[35] that help decrease swelling and inflammation of your eyes. Choose one of these tips following to make use of witch hazel:

Method 1:

  • Directly wash your eyes with this herbal remedy

Method 2:

  • Soak cotton balls in witch hazel extract
  • Use it as a cold compress over your eyes for 10 -15 minutes
  • Repeat the procedure till the red color vanishes.
15. Green Tea

Green tea may also help you get rid of red and swollen eyes as it works as an anti-inflammatory agent[36]. Moreover, catechins in green tea[37] may deeply absorb into the delicate tissues in your eyes and protect them from glaucoma – a potential reason for red eye condition.

Method 1:

  • Prepare green tea by boiling two green tea bags or leaves in a cup of water
  • Wait till it cools and rinse your eyes with this liquid twice a day until the symptoms disappear entirely.

Method 2: 

  • Apply green tea bags directly on your eyelids to get rid of puffiness.
16. Aloe Vera

Aloe vera is ubiquitously used as a medicinal plant to combat eye infections since it has antibacterial properties[38]. Moreover, the ethanol and ethyl compounds extracted from aloe vera may be used in eye drops to prevent inflammation.

  • Mix 2-3 tbsp of aloe vera gel with 1 tbsp of honey and a ½ cup of elderberry blossom tea
  • Wash your eyes with this mixture twice a day till the redness diminishes.
17. Bilberry

Bilberry has been used as a useful remedy for eye health improvement for a long time. It is claimed to boost the night vision of the users. The problems such as macular degeneration, retinopathy, and cataracts may also be reduced by using bilberry[39]. Most importantly, bilberry contains a high amount of flavonoids and antioxidants, which helps increase the blood flow in vessels around eyeballs to prevent eye disorders. Ask your doctor to get the best consultation before consuming bilberry tablets. Or, you can pour bilberry extract into your eyes twice daily, repeat the process for several days till the redness vanishes.

18. Castor Oil

Utilizing castor oil may create an effective home remedy as it has anti-inflammatory properties[40] in common with other traditional herbal solutions to allow eye redness fades away. Also, it is simple to proceed.

  • Put one drop of castor oil in each of your eyes
  • Repeat this procedure for 3-4 days until the redness disappears.
19. Chamomile Tea

Another beneficial method for the red eye is chamomile tea. It has inflammatory properties[41] that ease eye swelling due to infection. An easy way to make chamomile tea is to boil some chamomile flowers in a cup of water and strain this mixture to wash your eyes. Alternatively, put 12 drops of chamomile tincture into a cup of water and rinse your eyes. Splash the rinse into open eyes, or mist into open eyes.

20. Eyebright Herb

Eyebright herb, in another name Euphrasia Officinalis L., is one of a typical treatment compound that is used to eliminate eye redness[42]. Anti-inflammatory properties in Melanthonic extracts, which is used to produce eye drops, will increase the process of curing eye infections. Bring the mixture of water and this herb to boil, strain the solution, and apply it into your eyes.

21. Goldenseal

One traditionally method used in treating eye infections is Goldenseal. This herb retains an element which is naturally antibacterial called Berberine[43]; thus, it helps accelerate the treatment of eye infection and irritation. To make Goldenseal remedy into use, boil 2 tbsp of Goldenseal in a cup of water, strain the solution, and use it to wash your eyes. Alternatively, you can use it as eye drops by putting 2-3 drops of goldenseal tincture into each of your eyes.

Prevent is always better than cure. We all know that. These are what you should and shouldn’t do to keep your eyes healthy and avoid any symptoms that may lead to eye infections and redness.

Do’s And Don’ts

Do’s

  • Drink enough water to maintain body balance and anticipate diseases.
  • Get your eyes to rest frequently primarily when at work as it helps maintain essential moisture in your eyes to advert eye redness. Take a break from looking at the monitor screen following the 20-20-20 rule, put your vision off your computer every 20 minutes and gaze at a distant object 20 feet away for at least 20 seconds.
  • Wear goggles for eye protection when you go out to reduce direct sunlight exposure to your eyes, especially bacteria from the pool when you go swimming.
  • If possible, retain the humidity at your place in less than 50% to reduce the growth of mold.
  • Wash your hands frequently even if you are home or going out.
  • Keep good hygiene when using contact lenses since they may be a breeding ground for harmful bacteria. Remove them quickly when you realize the symptoms. Clean your contacts and ask your eye doctor when it’s needed for your lenses replacement.
  • Schedule an eye exam and visit your eye doctor at least once a month to prevent eye diseases.

Don’ts

  • Don’t rub your eyes even if you have washed your hands thoroughly as irritants on your hand, such as oil and debris, may severe eye infections and redness.
  • Avoid staying in the polluted environment, especially when your eyes get infected.
  • Quit smoking as it significantly increases the chance of getting those eyes symptoms for you and surrounding people.
  • Don’t overuse whitening eye drops as they may create a “crazy” red-eye effect over time.
  • If you suffer from eye allergies, it’s better to stop raising pets at home and stay away from them.

The above mentioned home remedies for red eyes are claimed to simplify and help reduce the symptoms of eye redness as well as other kinds of eye infections. Choose some of these home remedies and combine with your homemade tips to see how effective they are. If you have any contributing ideas about our article, do not hesitate to drop your words below this post. We will reply as soon as possible.

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