There are many benefits of using eye drops. Whether you have dry eyes, allergies, or a sty, eye drops can help to alleviate your symptoms and make your eyes feel better. Here are 25 benefits of using eye drops:
1) Prevents infection: This is the main benefit of eye drops. People who wear contact lenses should always have a bottle of eyedrop solution for use after removing the lenses.
2) Reduces red eyes: Most eye drops used to treat redness in the eyes contain an antihistamine, which reduces the effects of the natural chemical histamine in the body. Histamine is associated with the blood vessels expanding and contracting to rid the eyes of irritating material when exposed to irritants like pollen, dust, or animal dander.
3) Treats dry eye: Dry eye occurs when there aren’t enough tears in your eyes to keep them moist or lubricated, according to Medline Plus. Eye drops are often used to treat this condition, caused by an underlying disease such as Sjogren’s syndrome, lupus, or diabetes.
4) Helps get rid of foreign objects stuck in the eyes: It’s tough for someone without medical training to safely get a foreign object out of another person’s eye, especially if it’s lodged under the eyelid or in the corner of the eye. The only safe way to remove something stuck in another person’s eye is by using an eye irrigation device, which flushes water into the eyes to remove the foreign object.
5) Fights infection after eyelid surgery: Eyelid surgeries like upper and lower lid blepharoplasty are standard cosmetic procedures to reduce puffiness or wrinkles around the eyes. People may not realize that these surgeries often include removing part of the eyelid, which leaves a raw surface open to bacterial infections. Using antibiotic/steroid eye drop medications helps treat any potential conditions after this type of surgery.
6) Keep contact lenses clean: People who wear contact lenses should always wash their hands before handling their lenses. Then they should use a contact lens solution to store, clean, and keep the lenses in between wearings.
7) Prevents pink eye: Pink eye or conjunctivitis is an inflammation of the transparent membrane that covers the white portion of your eye and lines the inside of your eyelid, known as the conjunctiva.
8) Prevents glaucoma: Glaucoma is an optic nerve disease that causes vision loss if left untreated. Symptoms include seeing halos around lights at night, sudden blind spots in your peripheral vision, eye pain or redness, and nausea. The best way to prevent glaucoma is early detection due to genetic predisposition and family history of the disease.
9) Keep contact lenses from sticking together: Washing and storing your contact lenses properly is essential for preventing infections. To reduce the risk of developing a bacterial infection, use a specific solution for cleaning and storing contact lenses. These eye drops contain polyquaternium-1, an ingredient that helps prevent protein from sticking to both your lens and eyelids so they can be easily separated from each other.
10) Lubricates dry eyes due to allergies: Your eyes can become very dry if you have seasonal allergies or year-round sensitivities. Using artificial tears will moisturize your eyes, so they feel better and help improve vision.
11) Treats keratitis: Topical antibiotics are commonly used to treat several types of keratitis, an inflammation of the cornea from infection or injury that can cause blurred vision if left untreated. Your doctor may also prescribe anti-inflammatory steroid drops to treat this condition in addition to an antibiotic.
12) Prevents short-term changes in vision: Some eye drop medications can temporarily change your image, causing blurred or double vision when you use them. This side effect is known as metamorphopsia. Temporary vision changes are more likely to occur with higher doses of any medication used for glaucoma treatment.
13) Treats keratitis sicca: Keratitis sicca or dry eye is a common problem that can cause severe pain in the eyes. Topical artificial tears are the only way to treat dry eyes for more than temporary symptom relief. Some prescription medications used by an ophthalmologist may be necessary if lubricating drops are not enough to manage dry eyes.
14) Prevents ocular herpes simplex infections: Ocular herpes simplex is a common infection that causes flu-like symptoms like fever, headache, and asthenia (weakness). Using antiviral medication for herpes simplex and lubricating eye drops will help reduce discomfort by reducing pain at the site of infection.
15) Treats chalazion: A chalazion is a lump near your eyelid caused by an obstructed oil gland in your tear duct (lacrimal gland). Your doctor will prescribe antibiotic/steroid ophthalmic drops to treat this benign condition within two weeks if it has not gone away. You may also need warm compresses or minor surgery to relieve symptoms.
16) Controls itching: Eye drops can relieve itchy, watery eyes caused by allergies or other medical conditions like conjunctivitis and keratitis.
17) Treats allergy symptoms: If you have hay fever, steroid eye drops containing triamcinolone acetonide (Kenalog) will reduce the itching and redness associated with allergies. An antihistamine may also be used for combination therapy to reduce allergy symptoms.
18) Treats eye irritation due to ocular toxicity: Eye drops containing dexamethasone are commonly prescribed to ease itching and redness caused by postoperative inflammation (ocular toxicity).
19) Relieves pain after cataract surgery: Your doctor may prescribe steroid (anti-inflammatory) eye drops to reduce pain, swelling, and inflammation at the site of surgery.
20) Treats dry eyes in Sjogren’s syndrome: Sjogren’s syndrome is an autoimmune condition that attacks your salivary glands and lacrimal (tear) glands. The anti-inflammatory effect of steroid eye drops will help relieve discomfort from dry eyes.
21) Relieves inflammation after laser-assisted in situ keratomileuses (LASIK): Using topical corticosteroid eyedrops can speed healing and reduce inflammation at the site of surgery for up to one year after LASIK (laser eye surgery) to correct nearsightedness, farsightedness, or astigmatism.
22) Controls inferior limbic keratoconjunctivitis: This condition causes chronic redness and irritation of the cornea and conjunctiva (membranes lining your eyelids and eyeballs), as well as burning, grittiness, and itching. Topical non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications are usually prescribed to control symptoms combined with artificial tears for comfort when allergies or an autoimmune disorder triggers this condition.
23) Treats cicatricial conjunctivitis: This chronic eye condition causes scar tissue build-up on the conjunctiva, leading to vision impairment. Your doctor may prescribe an antibiotic ophthalmic drop to prevent permanent damage to the cornea caused by untreated cicatricial conjunctivitis.
24) Treats meibomian gland dysfunction: This condition causes your lower eyelids to stick together, resulting in dry eyes and vision impairment. Over-the-counter meibomian gland drop will unclog blocked glands to prevent inflammation and promote tear production for temporary relief.
25) Prevents spread of infection: Using antibiotic eye drops containing neomycin, polymyxin B, or trimethoprim-polymyxin (Polytrim) when there is a known infection or when you are having surgery involving incision to the eye can prevent the disease from spreading to other parts of your body.