How to Relieve Tired, Red Eyes

If you work on the computer every day like most of us, eye fatigue and redness can be a real issue. After 8+ hours of work your eyes can look less than rested -if not downright bloodshot. If you have dry or sensitive eyes long hours on the computer, allergies, watching TV and even the cold air outside can really aggravate your eyes.

Short of using Visine (which is bad for your eyes long term) relieving redness can be difficult. So, slowly step away from Visine and heed our safe tips for relieving eye fatigue and redness.

Just Say No to Visine

Use Visine and capillary restricting drops very sparingly -if at all. Capillary restricting eye drops have shown to increase eye redness over time, so never overuse them! The short term benefit is not worth the long term chronic redness. Limit use to special occasions only.

Get Anti-Glare “Gamer” Glasses

Gamma Ray Wayfarer, $22

Yes, your nerd factor will go up, but these babies are a life saver! Anti-glare glasses (often called “Gamer” glasses”) have special lenses that reduce blue rays and screen glare. They are often tinted with a yellow hue, but you can find more stylish ones from Gamma Ray that come in an array of styles and colors. We prefer Gamma Ray’s wayfarer glasses which are lightweight and every so slightly tinted. You can also get them in prescription so you can get the benefit of enhanced vision and anti-fatigue.

Gel ‘Tear’ Eye Drops

Use a non-capillary restricting moisturizing eyedrop, such as Thera Tears Liquid Gel Drops or Refresh Liquigel Lubricant Eye Drops. These eyedrops mimic your natural tears and are safe for frequent use. Your vision will be a bit blurry as the gel is thick and coating, but it will dissipate once the gel settles. Use in the morning, before bed, and throughout the day as necessary.

Warm or Cold Eye Compress

Thermalon Dry Eye Moist Heat Compress

Use a cold or warm compress depending on what works best for you. Everyone’s eyes react differently. You may find one works better than the other. For a warm compress, try Thermalon’s Dry Eye Compress, which is specifically designed to replenish moisture for dry irritated eyes.. For a cold compress, try using Elasto Gel’s Hot / Cold Sinus Mask. This compress is great for both hot and cold use. Keep each compress on for 10-20  minutes.

Omega-3 Eye Supplements

Omega-3 fatty acids are believed to reduce inflammation that can contribute to dry eyes. A study conducted by American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found women who consumed omega-3’s were at a 34% lower risk for dry eye syndrome. Another study by the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas showed that people who took a daily omega-3 supplement produced more tears. Try a supplement that is specially formulated for eye health, like Icaps Lutein and Omega-3 Eye Vitamin and Mineral Supplement or Thera Tears Omega-3 Supplement Capsules.

Thoroughly Remove Eye Makeup Before Bed

Not completely removing eye makeup before bed can contribute to irritation, puffiness, and redness. Use a gentle remover formulated for sensitive eyes to thoroughly remove eye makeup each night before bed. Eye scrubs are also helpful in preventing eye irritation and redness. We recommend Neutrogena’s Extra Gentle Eye Makeup Remover Pads and Ocusoft’s Lid Scrub Pads.

Give Your Eyes a Break

Skip your nightly news and Facebook browsing and give your eyes a rest after a long day. Also try to take breaks throughout the day to rest your eyes. Even if it’s for 10 minutes every couple hours.

Be Sure to Work in a Properly Lit Environment

OxyLED’s Smart Eyecare LED Desk Lamp, $49.99

Eye strain can be caused by improperly lit rooms (yes, those pesky fluorescent lights are overall bad!). Often a room that is too bright or too dark will cause eye strain. Ideally working in a dimly lit room is the best way to prevent eye strain. If possible turn off overhead lighting, close the blinds, and use floor lamps with indirect halogen or LED lighting like OxyLED’s Smart Eyecare LED Desk Lamp
, which is specifically designed for reducing eye strain. If working in the evening, avoid using your computer in a completely dark room. Always keep a lamp on while watching TV or working in dark rooms.

Check Your Eye Cosmetics for Allergies

You may be having an allergic reaction to a cosmetic product. If your eye irritation starts suddenly after using a new product, it may be the culprit. To rule out problemsome cosmetics, try omitting use one by one to see if any of your cosmetics are causing the problem.

Stay Hydrated + Avoid Alcohol

Eye strain and redness is exasperated by dehydration and alcohol. Drink plenty of water and avoid or reduce alcohol consumption.

Get an Eye Exam

Your eyes may be strained or red due to an underlying medical condition. If you have persistent red eyes, it’s best to see a doctor so they can rule out allergies, vision problems, or a medical issue.




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Mandy Ellis

Mandy Ellis is a certified nutritionist, journalist, traveler, and endless adventurer. Her work has appeared on Yahoo, AOL, Fox, and many others. When she’s not wanderlusting, she’s usually spending time with her French bull dog or hitting the yoga mat.

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