Reasons You Have a Red Eye

Reasons You Have a Red Eye

Oct 01, 2020

Eye redness happens when your eye vessels swell or get irritated. Red eyes are also referred to as bloodshot eyes and can be a sign of numerous underlying issues. However, the most severe eye problems occur when the redness is accompanied by pain or vision changes.

This article aims to explore some of the possible causes of that redness in your eye.


Various irritants may inflame your eye vessels. They include:

  • Dry air
  • Exposure to the sun
  • Dust
  • Colds
  • Bacterial infections
  • Coughing
  • Viral infections

Coughing and eyestrain can result in subconjunctival hemorrhageā€“a condition characterized by the formation of a blood blotch on one of your eyes. Although it may appear severe, the condition is usually painless and goes away within a few days.


Outdoor allergens include pollen from trees and grasses. Indoor allergens include dust, mold, and dander. In addition to reddening, your eye may also itch, burn, or tear up when exposed to these triggers. Also, you could experience a stuffy nose and sneezing.

Dry Eye

Your eyes may sometimes have an unusual texture or evaporate too fast. Other times, you can’t tear up at all. This is what is called the dry eye condition. It may cause ulcers on the cornea, pain, or loss of vision in sporadic cases.

Some other symptoms of this condition include:

  • Grittiness
  • A burning sensation in the eye
  • Blurry vision
  • Inability to cry
  • Eye fatigue
  • Heavy eyelids
  • Discomfort when wearing contact lenses
  • Excessive tears when your eyes are no longer dry
  • Discharge

Pink Eye

Pink eye or conjunctivitis is a condition characterized by inflammation of your eye’s white and your eyelid’s lining. The cause may be a bacteria or virus. Rampant in kids is contagious, so anyone who suspects to have the condition should regularly wash their hands and avoid rubbing their eyes.

You may also experience these additional symptoms:

  • Excessive tears
  • Burning, itching, or gritty eyes
  • Discharge from the eye (white, green, or yellow)
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Formation of a crust on the eyelashes or eyelid

Broken Blood Vessels

Tiny blood vessels might break below your eye surface trapping blood and turning the white of your eye bright red. Violent sneezing, hard vomiting, heavy lifting, or rubbing your eyes hard could puncture your eye blood vessels. People on blood-thinning medication are more likely to have ruptured blood vessels. Although they may appear messy, broken blood vessels are entirely harmless and do not cause pain.


With this condition, fluid builds up in your eye’s front part. The result is increased pressure and possible damage to the optic nerve. Glaucoma is the leading cause of vision loss in senior citizens.

Although usually painless, there is an unusual form of this disease that causes symptoms like:

  • Pain in the eye
  • Headache
  • Blurred vision
  • Nausea and vomiting

When to See a Doctor

Although not all the causes require urgent care, eye redness shouldn’t be dismissed. Ensure you visit an eye redness treatment center near you if:

  • The symptoms don’t go away after one week.
  • There are changes in your vision.
  • You feel pain
  • Sensitivity to light increases
  • There is discharge from the eye.
  • You are on blood-thinning medications.

Most red eye causes aren’t severe, but the following should be treated as eye emergencies:

  • The redness is caused by trauma or injury to the eye.
  • You have a severe headache and reduced vision.
  • You suffer from the rainbow or halo effect.
  • You have a nauseous feeling.

Treating the Symptoms of Eye Redness

At-home treatment is possible for eye redness resulting from conditions like conjunctivitis. Gently apply a warm compress to the affected part to bring down the pain and swelling. You should ensure your hands are always clean and don’t wear contacts or touch the eye.

If you need to see a doctor at an eye redness treatment clinic near you, they will ask about your symptoms before examining the eye and flushing out toxins. Depending on the results, your doctor at Founders Eyecare will prescribe a treatment to deal with the symptoms.

Preventing Eye Redness

The following tips will help prevent red eyes:

  • Frequently wash your hands if you have come in contact with someone with an eye infection
  • Get all the makeup out of your eyes daily
  • Wear contact lenses for the recommended time
  • Stay away from activities that could strain your eyes
  • Avoid eye irritants
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