(HealthyResearch.com) – When someone’s eyes are red, there might be a lot of different causes. Pink eye is a common thought, but it’s far from the only reason for redness. To know whether red eyes are a problem or just a minor nuisance that will clear on their own, it’s important to know what’s causing the discoloration. Here are seven causes of red eyes you should know about.
An allergy frequently causes red eyes, along with eye-watering, sneezing, coughing, and more. If someone has been exposed to an allergen, they might have red eyes for a while. Once they leave the area where the allergen is located, their eyes will slowly lose their redness. For more severe allergies, though, it might take a couple of hours or more. Being patient and using medications for allergies and red eyes may be the best way to feel better.
If someone has had too much to drink, their eyes will often be red. They might also have red eyes the next morning, as part of their hangover symptoms. While the redness in their eyes will fade as they feel better and become more hydrated, being a heavy drinker may result in eyes that are chronically red. Along with other symptoms, it’s one potential tell-tale sign of long-term alcoholism.
3. Contact Lenses
Contact lens wearers all know that irritation may be a common problem. If their eyes become irritated, redness often follows. People may even ask them if they’re tired or feeling unwell because their eyes are redder than expected. There are over-the-counter medications that may help contact lens wearers get the red out, and make their lenses more comfortable.
4. The Common Cold
Have a cold? Red eyes might be a part of the package of symptoms that comes with it. Not everyone will have red eyes when they have a cold or upper respiratory infection, but it’s fairly common and nothing to be alarmed about. As the cold gets better and the infection is fought off by the body, the red eyes will go away, as well.
A more serious issue that may cause red eyes is glaucoma. With this condition, too much pressure builds in the eyes and can result in pain, vision changes, and other problems. It’s treatable, but catching it early is very important for the best possible outcome. An eye doctor can diagnose it and determine the best course of treatment to reduce complications and help people keep their vision for as long as possible.
6. A Stye
A stye is a lot like a pimple or boil. It’s commonly found right inside the eyelid, or right on the edge where the lid touches the eye. Most people will have one at some point in their life, and some people get them more frequently than others. They often go away on their own, but an ophthalmologist might also prescribe an antibiotic ointment that’s safe for the eyes. The irritation from the stye might cause red eyes.
7. Lack of Sleep
Anyone short on sleep may have experienced eyes that were redder than normal. It might also feel like there’s sand in them, or they could feel “gritty.” That will get better with rest, and there are also over-the-counter eye drops that can be used to get eyes feeling and looking better. The best news: red eyes from a lack of sleep isn’t serious, and will resolve on its own.
No matter what causes your red eyes, getting the proper treatment for it may stop the redness and clear up any issue that might be causing it. Whether you need more rest, to avoid your allergens, or to see your eye doctor for more serious consideration, taking the right steps to reduce your eye redness might have you looking and feeling better and more confident in no time.
~Here’s to Your Health & Safety!
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