General information about reddened eyes

Eye reddening is the symptom of a protective reaction in our body: immune cells are pumped into the top protective layer of the eye in order to keep out harmful environmental influences.
For this, the blood circulation in the body has to be increased, which causes the vessels to widen and fill with blood. As a result, the red veins then appear in the eyes.

Treatment of reddened eyes

What helps with reddened eyes:

Since the "red eye" a Alarm signal it should always be dated Ophthalmologist to be examined. Self-treatment of a reddened eye can often address the underlying problem aggravatebecause, for example, chamomile tea used as a rinse can dry out the mucous membranes or lead to allergic reactions.
You should also Not Apply any eye drops on your own that may have helped a friend or acquaintance.

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Red eyes in the child

Children and infants are particularly complicated patients because they cannot describe their symptoms as easily as we adults. In addition, the dogma of pediatrics is: "Children are not little adults", that is, therapies and diagnoses are not simply transferrable one to one from adult to child.

Children and infants are more at risk in some phases of their development inflict head and neck injuries. So they experiment especially in the haptic phase a lot with objects, because in this phase they are particularlytouch"And" learn to try out ". In the oral phase Infants experience their environment especially with the mouth. Often, however, objects also get into the eyes, which can damage and irritate them. A reddened eye can easily go through in children, for example sand and then Rub have been caused. In general, children and infants like to rub their eyes when they have a foreign body sensation in the eye.

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Since infants are not yet able to pay attention to hygiene or understand infectious relationships, they are hands often with Germinate added that then brought into the eyes become. Then you have to differentiate: Is there one immediate cause for the reddened eye, such as heavy rubbing? Is the redness getting better or does it persist for days? In the latter case, a Infection of the eye exist. This is also indicated by a severe swelling, one overheat and Painwhich are mostly noticeable as "screaming" in children and infants.

The cause can then also be one Injury to the cornea keep an eye on, for example after playing in the forest, when a branch hits the face. Because the cornea very sensitively innervated is - speaks to many little ones Nerve fibers is taken care of - the pain from an injury can be very severe. While children can articulate this, one might not necessarily infer a corneal injury in screaming infants.

If there is pain or the redness in the eye goes away over days not, should necessarily be one Ophthalmologist to be visited.


Another reason for red eyes can be Allergies be. The Redness however always in both eyes because both eyes are equally affected. Especially in spring and summerWhen the first early bloomers begin to bloom, you can often see a real “wave of allergy sufferers”.

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It already helps here to have one closed space to seek out, which is shielded from the pollen count. Are particularly suitable for this Basement rooms. There is also the necessary here cool and rest that will help relieve symptoms. Can also be supportive cooling compresses be applied to the reddened eyes.

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Also help preventively Antiallergic drugs, i.e. drugs that dampen the excessive immune reaction in allergies. The disadvantage of antiallergic drugs is that they are all more or less potent fatigue cause. In the long term, only one can help desensitization against the corresponding allergens. This can be a Dermatologist but several sessions are required over a longer period of time.

More and more children and even infants are also affected, as there is less and less frequent natural and adequate habituation to the allergens. This is particularly due to the Shifting leisure activities from nature to closed spaces.

Eye reddened on one side

An eye reddened on one side speaks against an allergic event, since both eyes are usually burning, itchy and reddened. The causes of unilateral reddening of an eye can be diverse.

To strong rubbing can cause reddening of the eye, just like a foreign body. In the simplest case, you got a ball or a blow in the eye while doing sports. Even insects can fly into the eye while cycling and cause reddening - none of these are serious events, as the eye usually fully recovers within one to two days.

A Conjunctivitis (Conjunctivitis) can also have other causes. The simplex form is from dry air, dust and smoke causes and subsides on its own after a few days of rest. It is different with Infections with bacteriathat settle in the eye and become one Redness to lead. These can also occur unilaterally and take part in a treatment antibiotic necessary. They are then in the form of antibiotic eye drops or Eye ointments applied.

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A more serious complication is the so-called Cavernous sinus fistula. The cavernous sinus is a Network of veins in the brainwhich that blood out of sight. In a cavernous sinus fistula, a vascular connection forms between one of the cerebral arteries and the cavernous sinus. This should actually drain the blood and to Heart hand back. However, due to the pathological connection to the arterial high pressure system, it comes to Backlog in the affected eye and thereby to redness. In affected patients, there can often be a real pulsation perceived by the eye. The therapy consists of one microsurgical closure the vascular connection or - more often - an embolization, i.e. artificial "blockage".

a headache

Headache can occur along with reddened eyes.

a headache can be a serious complication in combination with a reddened eye: Violent, suddenly occurring headache with Loss of vision can on an acute glaucoma (also "green Star“) Close, whereby the eye would not necessarily be reddened. The chronic form of glaucoma can very well be accompanied by redness, headaches and progressive visual field defects. Glaucoma is a ophthalmological emergency, since it can lead to irreversible damage to the eye. The longer you wait with treatment, the higher the chance of it permanent blindness! The Therapy goal is the immediate lowering of intraocular pressurewhat can be achieved with drugs or surgery.

Headaches don't always have to be caused by glaucoma, however. Headache and red eyes combined can also affect one Horton's disease, also "Giant cell arteritis“Occur. It comes to boring pain in the templewhich are also noticeable when chewing. It is about a Inflammation of the temporal arterythat causes severe headache. If an ocular artery is also affected by the inflammation, visual disturbances, reddening and short-term complete visual loss (“amaurosis fugax”) can occur. The inflammation is high-dose in acute cases Glucocorticoids treated, which usually helps quickly. Temporal arteritis is also not to be taken lightly, untreated blind approx. 20-30% Of the patients.

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Red eyes with or without pain

A reddened eye can remain without pain if it is a so-called "Hyposphagma", in German "Conjunctival hemorrhage“Acts. There a small vein bursts in the eyewhich can be the case, for example, during high exertion. The blood is absorbed by itself within a few days, the blood stain completely regresses. A hyposphagma is, in a sense, a bruise in the eye, without long-term effects and without pain heals.

Corneal lesions lead to a reddened eye and so good again and again also to pain, because the cornea is supplied with very fine and sensitive nerves. In addition to the already mentioned trauma that can occur with sports injuries, a toxic / chemical damage be the cause. Therefore one helps here too Eye showers, which we still know from chemistry class: To prevent permanent damage to the eyes, the eye must be gently rinsed with plenty of water if it has come into contact with chemical substances. In everyday life we ​​also encounter such substances in the form of pepper spray, which is also often used by the police to break up demonstrations.

Special case of contact lenses

However, there are cases in which you can wait to see whether the symptoms will improve on their own:
If (possibly worn too long) contact lenses for the reddened eyeen are responsible, you take out the lenses and wait to see if this helps and the redness subsides again.

Home remedies

A classic home remedy that helps against reddened eyes is a brew from lavender and Eyebright. These herbs exist in the pharmacy to buy. They become together boiled down in hot water and let it steep for about ten minutes. Then the brew is poured off and the Herbs applied to the eyes. You should of course make sure that the herbs are not too hot! The procedure can several times a day be repeated.

For allergy-related redness the eyes helps too Calm and cooling the eyes, for example with a cool pack.

Prevention of red eyes

  • Artificial tears“(Disposable ampoules from the pharmacy) for wetting the dry eyes. eye drop The medicinal plant Euphrasia also help calm stressed eyes. The eye drop should neither Preservation-, Dyes or alcohol included and are also for Contact lens wearers suitable.
  • Even for a long time Screen work Care should be taken to use it enough often blink. Here the eyes become with the body's own Tear fluid moisturizes.
  • Much water drink (2 liters a day are optimal), because this supports the healthy Blood circulation of the Retina and the optic nerves, which keep the eye moist from the inside.
  • Against dry heating air houseplants and humidifiers are helpful. Regular ventilation also has a good effect on the humidity. It is ideal to do it regularly Breaks to do in the fresh air.
  • Constant reading and working on the screen make them tense Eye muscles and can be relaxed by looking into the distance. It is therefore advisable to look out the window from time to time.
  • A sunglasses protects the eyes from strong sun (including winter sun!) and strong wind.

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