Eye infection is a sensitive condition that should not be handled with levity. If you experience swelling and pain in your eye, that may be an indication of an eye infection. A majority of eye infections are treated with a combination of home remedies and medication, although treatment and care majorly depend on the cause of the infection: fungal, viral, or bacterial. As soon as you feel that an infection might be developing in your eye, take action to treat it immediately with home remedies for eye infection or consult your eye doctor for proper medical recommendations and treatment.
You will learn the following from this post:
Table of Contents
- Meaning of an eye infection
- Causes of an eye infection
- Symptoms of an eye infection
- Prevention of eye infections
- Home remedies for eye infection
What is an Eye Infection?
An eye infection arises when the eye is infected with viruses, bacteria, or other agents. The infection can affect the conjunctiva, cornea, and eyelids. Most eye infections are treated with medications. The specific treatment is determined by the type and cause of the present eye infection. The types of eye infection include:
- Conjunctivitis (pink eye)
- Stye (hordeolum)
- Corneal ulcers
Medications for Eye Infections
The medications may include the following:
- Bacterial: Treating an eye infection caused by bacteria typically involves using oral medications, eye drops, and ointments. OTC antihistamines (such as loratadine or diphenhydramine) may be administered for infections resulting from allergies.
- Viral: Generic medications are not ideal for treating viral eye infections, and the infection typically goes away on its own within 7 days. Lubricant eye drops may be administered on symptoms, including the administration of oral antihistamines for itchiness.
- Fungal: Antifungal eye drops are the best treatment for eye infections caused by fungi.
Causes of Eye Infections
Here are the major causes of eye infection:
Another name for conjunctivitis is pink eye, and it is one of the most common eye infections. The infection occurs when the conjunctiva blood vessel becomes infected, making the eyes turn red or pink and inflamed.
Keratitis is a cornea infection, the layer covering the iris and pupil. Keratitis can result from bacterial, viral, fungal, or parasitic infections. Keratitis can also develop from humid climate eye injury, weakened immune system, dirty contact lenses, or long-term use of corticosteroid eye drops.
Blepharitis is basically the inflammation of the eyelids, which can arise when the oil glands within the eyelids become clogged. Factors triggering this condition include eyebrow or scalp dandruff, mites or lice in the eyelashes, allergic reaction to makeup, or weakened immune system.
Also known as hordeolum, a stye is a pimple-like bump that produces an oil gland on the outer edges of the eyelids. Because of the accumulation of oil, dead skin, and other debris, the glands get clogged, making bacteria develop.
Uvea is the central layer of the eyeball that assists in carrying blood to the retina. Uveitis occurs when an infection triggers inflammation in the uvea and can be caused by viral infections, eye injuries, a weakened immune system, or autoimmune disorders. Uveitis does not usually result in serious problems, but leaving it untreated may result in loss of vision.
Cellulitis is also referred to as periorbital cellulitis. It is a condition that arises when the eye’s tissues become infected due to injury or bacterial growth.
- Ocular herpes
Ocular herpes is a condition that occurs when a person is infected by the herpes simplex virus (HSV-1), a causative agent for STDs.
Endophthalmitis is an inflammation that occurs within the eyes, and a fungal or bacterial infection causes it. Endophthalmitis usually occurs after eye surgery, such as a cataract, or a result of injury to the eye, such as with a sharp object.
Symptoms of an Eye Infection
Common eye infection symptoms include the following:
- Blurred vision
- Crusty lashes
- Green, yellow, or clear discharge from one or both eyes
- Painful lumps below the eyelashes or under the eyelids
- Increased sensitivity to light
- Burning sensation
- Redness or tearing
- Mild to moderate pain, discomfort, and itching in the eye
Most symptoms depend on the type of eye infection a person has:
- Symptoms of conjunctivitis
- Eyes become stuck shut, usually when a person first wakes up
- Eyes ooze or weep gooey fluid
- Burning or itching eyes
- Eyes appear red or pink
- Symptoms of keratitis include:
- Sensitivity to light
- Blurred vision
- Eye discharge
- Mild or severe pain
- Eye redness
- In severe situations, the cornea may seem gray or have white to gray areas
- Symptoms of a stye include:
- Eyelid swelling and pain
- A painful and red lump on the edge of the eyelid, which may look like a pimple
- Symptoms of blepharitis
- Scaling or flaking of eyelid skin
- Matted, crusty eyelashes in the morning
- Burning or gritty feeling in the eyes
- Eye redness
- Itchy, swollen, red eyelids
- Symptoms of a corneal ulcer include:
- White spot on the cornea that may appear when looking in a mirror
- Swelling of the eyelids
- Blurred vision
- Sensitivity to light
- Pus or other discharge
- Eye redness
- Feeling something is in the eye
- Severe soreness and eye pain
- Symptoms of uveitis include:
- Constricted pupil
- Blurred vision
- Pain while looking at bright lights
- Eye pain
- Eye redness
Preventing an Eye Infection
After you have recovered from an eye infection, you can prevent its recurrence by following these measures:
- Avoid touching your eyes all the time
- Use clean towels if you need to clean your eyes
- Change your pillowcases occasionally
- Disinfect contact lenses on a daily basis
- Follow an anti-inflammatory diet
- Avoid using other people’s makeup or sharing your own
- Avoid getting in contact with people with an eye infection, especially conjunctivitis
Home Remedies for Eye Infection
Before using natural remedies to treat your eyes, you should first consult a professional. Some eye infections can be severe. Inform your doctor if you think you have an eye infection. If you suspect that your child may have an eye infection, first take them to a doctor before trying these home remedies for eye infection.
1. Salt Water
Saline is another name for salt water and is one of the most effective natural treatments for eye infections. Saline is almost the same as teardrops, the eye’s way of naturally cleansing itself. Salt contains antimicrobial properties. As a result of this, it only stands to reason that saline is effective in treating eye infections. You can buy a sterile saline solution from a pharmacy or online.
2. Tea Bags
Covering your eyes with cooled tea bags while they are shut can be an effective way of relaxing and unwinding. Some have claimed that it is an excellent home treatment for eye infections.
Some types of tea possess soothing, anti-inflammatory properties. For instance, studies have indicated that black tea, green tea, rooibos, and chamomile all possess anti-inflammatory properties. Due to this, applying tea bags over your eyes could be a great way to reduce swelling.
So far, there have not been studies indicating how tea bags affect the eyes or whether they can be used to treat eye infections. You should understand that while anti-inflammatory treatment can provide relief from the symptoms of an eye infection, the condition should be treated at the root cause.
3. Warm Compress
If your eyes are irritated, infected, or sore, a warm compress can be a great help. A study carried out on 22 participants in 2014 indicated that warm compress can improve eye health in those with healthy eyes.
A review in 2012 suggested that warm compresses can help those suffering from blepharitis, a condition that involves the eyelids getting crusted and inflamed.
Additionally, the American Academy of Ophthalmology indicates that using a warm compress to soothe the symptoms of conjunctivitis is pretty compelling.
Warm compresses might be unable to soothe styes because they reduce the blockages that caused the condition. Warm compresses can also help soothe the symptoms of dry eye.
It is essential to understand that, while warm compresses might be soothing, they cannot actually cure the condition.
The following are some tips for making a warm compress:
- soak a cloth in warm water and place it gently on the infected eye
- use hot, but not extremely hot water so you don’t scald yourself
- ensure that the cloth you use is clean so you don’t risk more germs getting into your already infected eye
4. Cold Compress
Cold compresses, like warm compresses, don’t exactly cure eye infections – they only provide relief from discomfort and pain associated with eye infections. Cold compresses can decrease the swelling in the case of eye infections and injuries.
The following are tips for making a cold compress:
- soak a cloth in cool water and carefully place it on the affected eye
- you can also freeze a wet cloth in a sealable plastic for some minutes before placing it on your eyes
- do not put ice directly on your eye or eyelid or press down hard on it.
5. Wash Linens
Wash your pillowcases and towels every day when you have an eye infection, such as conjunctivitis. Since these items touch the infected eye, they can spread the bacteria, virus, or fungi to the other eye or might infect another person in your family. Use detergent and hot water to kill any remaining bacteria on the materials.
6. Get Rid of Makeup
It is a bad idea for someone with an eye infection to share makeup. Indeed, even people without the infection should not share makeup such as eyeliner, eye shadow, or mascara to avoid eye infections. If you have an eye infection, you must get rid of your eye and face makeup, including makeup brushes. This will ensure that you won’t get re-infected after your condition has been treated.
Weather change is one of the most common triggers of eye infection. During this period, the eye swells up, turns red, and has lots of irritation. The elements lysozyme, phenolic acid, and flavonoid found in honey contain anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties that repair damaged cells and tissues and prevent inflammation. Honey is one of the most effective remedies for eye infections and can work where even the medicated eye drops fail.
Honey can heal inflammation in the eyes. Mix a drop of original honey to a teaspoon of rose water to use as a natural eye drop, or add about 4 teaspoons of honey to water. Use the mixture to wash your eyes to gain relief from the infection. In addition, honey has been used for hundreds of years to treat wounds, burns, and cuts.
8. Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is excellent for women’s health. It contains numerous properties that can help boost immunity and protect the body against several types of infection. Generally, vinegar can effectively battle bacterial eye infections. Apple cider vinegar also contains good bacteria that can help digest food. ACV contains malic acid – a bacteria-fighting agent.
Use apple cider vinegar that contains malic in it to fight the bacterial eye infection that you have. Apple cider vinegar contains some rich bioactive compounds such as caffeic acid, catechin, acetic acid, etc. All these elements give apple cider vinegar its powerful antioxidant properties. Add a teaspoon of ACV into a cup of water and thoroughly wash your eyes with a cotton ball. This will help in getting rid of foul odor and breath, including helping keep the teeth white.
While there are several home remedies for eye infections that might provide relief for the symptoms, it is highly imperative that you talk to a doctor if you suspect that you have an eye infection. It is also especially crucial that you seek medical help if your child has this infection.
Is Honey a Good Option for Cure of Eye Infection?
Honey can fight bacterial eye infections and speed recovery through its antimicrobial properties. Due to this property, it is a good remedy for eye infections.
What Supplements are Preferred Over Eye Infection?
Foods rich in vitamins A, E, B9, B12, and C, Riboflavin, Niacin, Lutein, and Omega-3 Fatty acids are some of the preferred supplements that are beneficial for eye health.
What are the Common Causes of Eye Infections?
Eye Infections can be due to bacteria, viruses, chemical splash, allergies, a splash of unhygienic objects, chemical products, etc. The eye is a sensitive organ that should be taken care of for minor things.
How can I treat eye infection at home?
Warm compress, cleanse the eye, avoid touching your eyes, OTC drops
What is the best natural cure for eye infection?
Honey: Honey has natural antimicrobial properties. A solution of equal parts pure honey and distilled or boiled (then cooled) water can be used as a rinse. But be aware, this can sting a bit.
How do you treat an eye infection overnight?
Over-the-counter treatments and home remedies can help soothe the symptoms of mild eye irritations, but they won’t cure an eye infection, especially overnight.
What can I put on my infected eye?
Over-the-counter lubricating eye drops, often known as artificial tears.
Common treatments for eye infections typically include antibiotic, antiviral, or antifungal eye drops, ointments, or oral medications. However, these need to be prescribed by a healthcare provider.
The information contained in this post is for educational purposes only. Always consult your primary care doctor before using the remedies that are provided. The information is provided by The Hidden Cures and while we do timely, in-depth research on the information that we provide to you, everything stated may not be up to date or accurate from the time it was written.