As one of the highlights of the face, eyes are the point that attracts attention. The eyes are also one of the most sensitive parts of the body, so the occurrence of eye discomfort is quite common, including puffy eyes, dark circles under the eyes, dry skin under the eyes, especially red eyes. Red eyes, also known as conjunctivitis, can be a real drag, making you look like you haven’t slept in weeks (even if you have!). But don’t be afraid. You don’t have to surrender to bloody sadness. This guide will equip you with effective home remedies and smart health tips to get rid of redness and get your eyes sparkling again.


Bloodshot or red eyes often result from exposure to external irritants, commonly known as allergens. The appearance of irritated eyes can be displeasing, characterized by pink or red streaks in the conjunctiva and sclera, typically white. Accompanying symptoms frequently include itchiness, tearing, and a burning sensation.

Various common irritants contributing to bloodshot eyes encompass pollen (common in hay fever), chlorine from swimming pools, pet dander, dust, mold, cigarette smoke, and perfumes. In response to these irritants, the eyes produce histamine, a substance that dilates and inflames the tiny blood vessels beneath the eye’s surface.

For many cases, red eyes are harmless and can be effectively managed with home remedies or over-the-counter treatments. Identifying and avoiding the specific allergen responsible for the red eye is often the best course of action. However, certain causes of red eyes may necessitate a medical diagnosis and prescription medication.

When faced with red or bloodshot eyes, determining the appropriate course of action is crucial. Brenda Pagán-Durán, MD, an ophthalmologist in New Jersey, provides valuable tips to help individuals make informed decisions. It’s essential to understand what steps can be taken at home and recognize when seeking professional medical advice is necessary.


To alleviate red eyes, consider incorporating the following practices into your routine:


Start by using over-the-counter artificial tears, which effectively relieve irritation and help wash away allergens from the eyes. Limit usage to four times per day, and if you find the need for more frequent application, opt for preservative-free artificial tears to avoid potential irritation.


If you find yourself susceptible to seasonal allergies, particularly those affecting your eyes, over-the-counter antihistamine eye drops can prove highly beneficial in providing relief from itchiness and discomfort. Antihistamines work by blocking histamine, a chemical released during an allergic reaction, thereby reducing symptoms like itching and redness. Follow the recommended dosage instructions on the product packaging and adhere to any guidelines provided by your healthcare professional. 


To provide soothing relief for your eyes, consider incorporating the practice of applying cool compresses or washcloths multiple times throughout the day. This simple yet effective remedy can be particularly beneficial in alleviating redness, irritation, and overall discomfort. To create a cool compress, you can dampen a clean washcloth with cold water and gently place it over your closed eyes. Alternatively, you may use ice packs wrapped in a thin cloth to avoid direct contact with the skin. Ensure that the compress is not too cold to prevent potential discomfort or injury.


To effectively manage and prevent red eyes, it’s essential to proactively identify and avoid potential triggers and irritants such as smoke, fumes, pollen, dust, chlorine, or pet dander. Steer clear of environments with heavy smoke or strong fumes, including industrial areas and places with exposure to potent chemicals. Stay informed about pollen levels and take precautions during peak allergy seasons, such as wearing sunglasses and limiting outdoor activities. Implement measures to reduce indoor allergens like regular cleaning, dusting, and the use of air purifiers. 


Maintaining good hygiene is crucial for preventing eye infections and minimizing the risk of red eyes. A key practice is frequent handwashing. Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water, especially before touching your face or eyes. This helps prevent the transfer of bacteria and viruses that could cause infections. Refrain from touching your eyes unless your hands are clean. The eyes are sensitive organs, and touching them with dirty hands can introduce germs and irritants, potentially leading to redness or infections. If you wear contact lenses, always wash your hands before handling them, as improper handling can increase the risk of eye infections.

Lastly, ensure cleanliness in your environment by using clean bedding and towels on a daily basis. These practices collectively contribute to managing and preventing red eyes effectively.


Ensuring a clean environment is a crucial aspect of treating and preventing red eyes. Start by maintaining cleanliness in your living spaces, particularly in areas where you spend a significant amount of time. Regularly dust and vacuum to reduce the presence of dust particles, a common irritant that can contribute to redness and discomfort. Be attentive to indoor air quality by using air purifiers to filter out allergens and pollutants. This can be especially beneficial for individuals prone to allergies, as clean air contributes to overall eye health.


To prevent red eyes, it’s essential to adopt a range of proactive measures that contribute to overall eye health. First and foremost, avoid exposure to smoke, pollen, dust, and other potential triggers that can irritate the eyes. Minimizing contact with these irritants helps reduce the risk of developing redness and discomfort.

If you’re experiencing red eyes, it’s advisable to refrain from wearing contact lenses until the issue clears. Additionally, for those who wear contact lenses regularly, always clean them properly and avoid reusing disposable lenses to prevent eye infections and complications.

Maintaining good hygiene practices is crucial in preventing red eyes. Wash your hands regularly and refrain from touching your eyes, especially if your hands are not clean. This helps prevent the transfer of bacteria or irritants to the eyes, reducing the risk of inflammation.

Regular laundering of clothes, pillowcases, and towels is another important preventive measure. Keeping these items clean helps eliminate potential allergens and irritants that could contribute to red eyes.

For individuals with seasonal allergies, incorporating bathing or showering before bedtime or after coming inside from outdoor activities can be beneficial. This helps remove allergens from the body, minimizing the likelihood of triggering red eyes.

When spending time outdoors, especially during high pollen or dusty conditions, wearing sunglasses provides an extra layer of protection. Sunglasses shield the eyes from pollen, dust, and other airborne particles, helping to prevent irritation and redness.

By integrating these practices into your daily routine, you create a comprehensive approach to preventing red eyes and promoting overall eye health. If red eyes persist or worsen, seeking guidance from an eye care professional ensures a thorough assessment and appropriate intervention. Regular eye check-ups remain essential for ongoing eye care and early detection of potential issues.


Red eyes can stem from various common conditions. It’s important to note that the redness might not always be limited to the surface of the eye; instead, the broader eye area surrounding it may exhibit a reddish appearance.


Common symptoms of this inflammation include itching, redness, flaking, and crusting along the eyelid margins. This condition, often arising from bacterial infection or issues with the glands beneath the eyelids, may necessitate medical intervention to avert potential complications.


The emergence of a red bump on the eyelid is typically associated with a bacterial infection, often connected to blepharitis. To alleviate this condition, applying a warm compress three to four times daily for a week can effectively unblock the pores in the eyelid.


This is a lump that typically develops farther from the eyelid’s edge compared to a stye. Unlike a stye, it is not bacterial in origin but results from the blockage of a gland in the eyelid.

Treatment and self-care methods resemble those for conjunctivitis, involving the application of warm compresses. It is important not to squeeze styes or chalazion. They might resolve with home treatments, but if persistent, medical intervention may be necessary, such as the application of antibiotic ointment or a steroid injection.

In cases where large bumps resist healing or impede vision, an eye specialist may opt for surgical removal.


These conditions can cause red eyes, a prevalent issue arising from decreased tear production or increased loss of the watery component from the eyes. The use of artificial tears can be beneficial in such cases.

If dry eyes are linked to the work environment or prolonged computer use, making certain adjustments may offer relief. Employing protective eyewear in dusty surroundings or taking breaks from extended screen sessions are potential solutions.


Wearing contact lenses for too long can make your eyes turn red. It’s a good idea to take breaks and not wear them too much. If your eyes get red, you can use artificial tears to feel better.


If your eye turns red and there’s bruising from an injury, use an ice pack for 15 to 20 minutes every hour on the first day to lessen swelling. If your vision is affected, you see blood in your eye, or you feel pain when moving your eye, it’s important to see a doctor right away.


Conditions such as uveitis, glaucoma, and acute angle-closure glaucoma may lead to red eye and require prompt medical attention. Uveitis involves inflammation of the middle layer of the eye, while glaucoma is a group of eye diseases that can result in optic nerve damage. Acute angle-closure glaucoma is a sudden and severe form of glaucoma. These conditions can have serious consequences for vision, so if you experience persistent red eyes or other concerning symptoms, it is crucial to seek the advice of an eye care professional for proper evaluation and treatment.


1. How do you get rid of red eyes fast?

Cool compresses and artificial tears can provide relief for viral and allergic conjunctivitis. Viral symptoms typically resolve within two weeks. In the case of allergic conjunctivitis, cool allergy eye drops can also be helpful.

2. How long does red eye last?

A painless red eye is usually caused by minor issues like conjunctivitis or a burst blood vessel. These conditions typically don’t impact vision and usually improve within a week or two.

3. How do you get rid of red eyes in 5 minutes?

Using a warm compress can help with a red eye. Place a damp, warm cloth over your eyes for a few minutes.

4. Can you sleep off a red eye?

Yes. Although you may not experience top-tier sleep quality on a red-eye flight, you can still catch some rest and arrive feeling well-rested.

5. Can a red eye go away on its own?

In most cases, a red eye is not a cause for concern and often resolves on its own. However, occasionally it may indicate a more serious issue, necessitating medical assistance.


Incorporating these home remedies and health tips into your routine can be effective in addressing and preventing red eyes. By understanding the causes and adopting proactive measures, you empower yourself with practical ways on how to fix red eyes. Remember, consistency in eye care practices and seeking professional advice when needed contribute to maintaining clear and healthy eyes.