Optometry is the field of medicine that focuses on the eyes. Optometrists are the doctors that specialize in this field. They work to detect, diagnose, manage and treat conditions of the eyes. However, what may be surprising to learn is that optometry can also detect general health problems, just by examining the eyes.In this article,…
Common Causes of Red Eyes and How to Treat Them
Red eyes can be the result of several different causes, and they can grow progressively worse if the underlying issue is not determined and dealt with appropriately. It is important to be familiar with the more common causes of red eyes to know exactly how to treat the issue in the future.
Why do people get red eyes?
Red eyes are very common and affect numerous people in the United States each year. The following is everything to know about red eyes, including what they are exactly, what causes red eyes and what treatment options are available to ensure that the issue does not linger or last for longer than necessary.
What are red eyes?
Red eyes are exactly that - eyes that appear to be red. When red eyes exist, the sclera - which is the visibly white portion of the eyeball - becomes bloodshot. Red eyes are more than just a symptom and they can be considered a condition in and of themselves; they often exist alongside or lead to other eye complications, as well. Several of the more common associated symptoms include the following:
- Dry eyes
- Eye soreness
- Burning sensation
- Blurry vision
- Light sensitivity
The quicker a doctor can diagnose red eyes, the easier it is to provide treatment. The severity and the exact cause of red eyes often dictate the form of treatment that will follow.
Causes of red eyes
Although there are numerous reasons why someone may suffer from red eyes, there are certain causes that are more common than others. The most common causes of red eyes include but are not limited to the following:
- Allergic reaction
- Contact lenses
- Digital eye strain
- Lack of sleep
- Eye injury
There are a wide variety of factors that may lead to red eyes, and it is important for those who suffer from the condition to examine their lifestyle, routine and overall health to try and determine the exact cause. However, the best way to determine the cause of red eyes is to visit a medical professional, who can evaluate the symptoms and help determine the cause and treatment options available.
Treatment options for red eyes
The form of treatment prescribed for dry eyes is dependent largely on the cause. For issues such as an allergic reaction, over-the-counter allergy medication may help to reduce red eyes, especially when taken along with eye drops and proper rest. It is also important to keep contacts clean and replace them often. If sleep complications are the cause of red eyes, certain medications may help the patient keep a more consistent sleep schedule and reduce red eyes. For those who suffer from eye strain, taking frequent breaks while working is often a successful treatment and prevention strategy.
When to see a doctor for the treatment of red eyes
Anytime red eyes exist along with other eye complications and the symptoms do not improve on their own over an extended amount of time, it is important to see a doctor for treatment. While home care may work for some, many instances of red eyes require medication and other forms of prescribed treatment.
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