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Home Remedies For Eye Infections – Do These 10 Methods Work?

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Home Remedies For Eye Infections – Do These 10 Methods Work? Hyderabd040-395603080 October 9, 2019

Is your eyelid swollen? Do you have discharge accumulating in the corner of an eye? Does your eye hurt every time you blink? If you answered yes to any of these questions, you have most probably developed an eye infection.

An eye infection can be particularly annoying as your eyes hurt continuously. The itching sensation and dryness of the eyes are sure to have you crying for help. In this article, you will understand what an eye infection is and explore the remedies that can help treat it at home.

What Is An Eye Infection?

At some point in our lives, we have all experienced pain in the eyes. This is also usually accompanied by redness and an itching sensation in your eyes. This is a sure sign of an eye infection.

An eye infection can affect the following parts of your eyes:

  • Cornea
  • Eyelids
  • Conjunctiva (This is the area layer that covers the inner and outer layer of your eyes.)

Common eye infections are:

  • Blepharitis – A condition in which your eyelid becomes inflamed and crusted.
  • Dry Eyes – A condition that occurs when the tear ducts are unable to provide enough lubrication to your eyes.
  • Keratitis – A condition in which the cornea is inflamed.
  • Pink Eye – Also known as conjunctivitis. It occurs due to irritation or inflammation of the conjunctiva, resulting in redness, itching, and tearing of the eyes.
  • Stye – A painful red lump that is found near the edge of the eyelid and looks like a boil or pimple.

An eye infection can affect only one of your eyes or both. Thankfully, there are home remedies for eye infections that not only soothe the symptoms but also help to contain and manage the infection. However, before you proceed with any home remedy, talk to your doctor as some eye infections may be serious and require immediate medical attention.

Home Remedies For Eye Infections

1. Colostrum (Breast Milk)

Colostrum (Breast Milk) Pinit

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Some newborn babies can develop eye infections. Using breast milk can be effective in managing the symptoms of neonatal eye infections, such as conjunctivitis (1). As colostrum contains high levels of antibodies that can help fight infections, it can help alleviate conjunctivitis in newborn babies.

You Will Need

A few drops of breast milk

What You Have To Do
  1. Using a dropper, pour a drop or two of colostrum in the eyes of the infant.
  2. Wash off in 5 minutes.
How Often You Should Do This

Repeat two times daily.

2. Essential Oils

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Essential oils, like tea tree, peppermint, and rosemary oil, possess antimicrobial properties (2). Hence, they can help in combating infection caused by various microbes and prevent further infection.

You Will Need
  • A few drops of tea tree oil or rosemary oil
  • 1 L hot water
  • A towel
What You Have To Do
  1. Heat a large bowl of water and add 3-4 drops of tea tree or rosemary oil to it.
  2. Cover yourself with a towel and bend over the bowl.
  3. Let your skin absorb the steam for 5-6 minutes.
How Often You Should Do This

Do this two times daily.

Caution: Do not apply essential oils on their own or even if they are diluted in and around the eyes as they may cause irritation and a burning sensation.

3. Green Tea Bag

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Green tea extract is rich in bioactive compounds that possess anti-inflammatory properties (3). Using green tea bags may soothe your eyes and reduce the swelling, but there is no scientific evidence to prove that they can treat eye infection. Hence, exercise caution.

You Will Need

Green tea bags

What You Have To Do
  1. Take two used green tea bags.
  2. Refrigerate them for a while and place them on your eyes for 15-20 minutes.
  3. Remove them and wash your eyes.
How Often You Should Do This

You can do this two times daily to reduce swelling and pain.

4. Honey

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Honey has been used to treat eye infections like blepharitis, keratitis, and keratoconjunctivitis (4). As honey has anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties, it may help alleviate eye infections.

You Will Need
  • 1 cup of water
  • 2-3 teaspoons of honey
  • A sterilized dropper
What You Have To Do
  1. Boil a cup of water and add a few drops of honey to it.
  2. Stir well and allow it to cool down.
  3. Use a sterilized dropper to put a drop in each eye.
  4. Wash off with water after 5 minutes.
How Often You Should Do This

Do this 2-3 times a day.

5. Turmeric

Turmeric Pinit

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Curcumin is the major bioactive compound in turmeric. Its anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties can effectively alleviate the symptoms associated with eye infections (5). Though more randomized clinical trials are needed to establish its therapeutic properties, initial studies have shown promising results. Hence, turmeric can be a good home remedy for eye infections.

You Will Need
  • 1 teaspoon of turmeric powder
  • 1 cup of warm water
What You Have To Do
  1. Boil a cup of water and add a teaspoon of turmeric to it.
  2. Allow it to cool for a while.
  3. Soak a sterile washcloth in this solution.
  4. Use this as a warm compress and wash your eyes after this process.
How Often You Should Do This

Do this at least once a day.

6. Lemon Juice

Lemon Juice Pinit

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Sometimes, allergic reactions to substances or a change in the weather can cause eye infections to flare up. Due to its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, lemon juice can help fight eye infections and their symptoms (6). However, as there is not enough research to back this up, make sure you discuss this remedy with your doctor.

You Will Need
  • 1 glass of warm water
  • ½ ripe lemon
What You Have To Do
  1. Extract the juice from the lemon.
  2. Add this to a glass of warm water and mix well.
  3. Drink this up.
How Often You Should Do This

Drink this juice at least once daily.

7. Saline Water

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This is one of the most effective remedies for eye infections. Studies have shown that saline water is antiseptic (7). This property can prove to be helpful in treating eye infection. As saline water is similar to teardrops, we can conclude that it can help alleviate eye infections.

You Will Need
  • ½ L of boiled water
  • 1-2 teaspoons of salt
What You Have To Do
  1. Mix the salt with the boiled water.
  2. Rinse your eyes thoroughly with this solution.
How Often You Should Do This

Wash your eyes with this mild solution several times a day.

8. Vitamin Supplements

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Due to a fast-paced lifestyle, your body can become deficient in essential vitamins and minerals. This, in turn, can make you prone to eye infections. Research shows that vitamins A, C, and E can be beneficial for maintaining good ocular health (8).

These nutrients can help prevent any infection or damage to your eyes. You can take supplements prescribed by your doctor to make up for the deficiency. Alternatively, you can consume foods rich in nutrients like leafy vegetables, citrus fruits, seafood, nuts, and cheese.

Note: Please make sure that you consume these supplements only when prescribed by your doctor.

9. Castor Oil

Castor Oil Pinit

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Castor oil contains ricinoleic acid that has anti-inflammatory properties, which can help in reducing swelling in your eyes (9). It can also lubricate your eyes, thereby alleviating any irritation (10), (11).

You Will Need
  • Castor oil (100% organic, cold-pressed, hexane-free)
  • Sterile washcloth
  • Water
What You Have To Do
  1. Apply castor oil around your eyes.
  2. Soak the washcloth in warm water and place it on your eyelids.
  3. Leave it on for about 10 minutes.
How Often You Should Do This

Do this two times daily.

10. Cold Compress

Cold Compress Pinit

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Using a cold compress can help by alleviating the inflammation and discomfort caused by the infection (12). However, it will not treat the infection.

You Will Need

A cold compress

What You Have To Do
  1. Place a cold compress on the affected eye for about 2-3 minutes.
  2. Do this two more times.
How Often You Should Do This

Repeat this procedure two times daily until the swelling subsides.

Use any one or a combination of these remedies for relief from an eye infection. Remember, you need to maintain a hygienic and healthy lifestyle to avoid the occurrence of such eye infections.

Did you find this post informative? Feel free to reach out to us in the comments section below for any further queries.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the causes of eye infection?

Eye infections can be caused by various microbes or bacteria that come in contact with the area surrounding your eyes or directly in your eyes.

How do I know if my eye is infected?

Different types of infections have different symptoms. But the most common sign of eye infection is the redness of the eyes and the presence of a yellowish discharge that can crust over your eyes.

How long does eye infection last?

Typically, an eye infection can last anywhere from two days to a week. In severe cases, it can last for a few weeks to a month.

How does eye infection spread?

Most commonly, eye infection spreads by hand-to-eye contact. The presence of infection-causing bacteria or microbes on your hands can transfer it to your eyes.

Can I use apple cider vinegar for eye infection?

Apple cider vinegar is acidic. It contains acetic acid, which is known to irritate and damage the eyes, specifically the cornea (13). Hence, do not use undiluted ACV. Also, consult your doctor before trying this remedy out.

13 sources

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Atulya Satishkumar