I was mowing the lawn the other day when I had to stop abruptly.
Something had gotten into my left eye. It was a small piece of dirt, but it was so irritating that I had to stop for almost 10 minutes to get it out.
And while that was bothersome, at least I could identify the culprit and deal with my itchy eye.
But sometimes, you can have itchy eyes even when there is no irritant in them.
Causes of Itchy Eyes
Itchy eyes could be because of an allergy, a viral infection (conjunctivitis, or pink eye), a blocked tear duct, a sty, or even the common cold.
Or there could be other medical conditions like Bell’s palsy, Sjogren’s syndrome, a thyroid disorder, or even a tumor that can cause your eyes to water excessively.
So, the most important thing to do is to find out what the cause of the problem is and treat the cause rather than just the symptom.
Natural Home Remedies for Itchy Eyes
Once the more serious causes are ruled out, and if the itching is a result of a mild allergy, infection, or cold, you can try these simple home remedies to get relief and soothe your eyes.
1. Cold Compress
Applying a cold compress on the affected eye can give you instant relief. Place a cloth soaked in ice-cold water over your eyes several times a day. You can use chilled chamomile teabags in place of the cloth if you wish (though it’s not advised if you have allergies to plants in the daisy family).
The antioxidant properties of cucumber help reduce itchiness, inflammation, and swelling. Refrigerate slices of a washed cucumber for 15 to 20 minutes and place them over your eyes for 10 to 12 minutes. Do this four to five times a day.
3. Cold Milk
This popular remedy works surprisingly well. You can either dab cold milk around the affected eye with a cotton ball or place the soaked cotton ball on the eye as a cold compress.
The soothing and cooling effect of rosewater make it a go-to home remedy for itchy eyes. Rinse your inflamed eyes with rosewater twice a day.
5. Salt Water
In the right proportions, this antibacterial solution is a godsend for itchy eyes. Boil a cup of distilled water and add a teaspoon of salt to it. Use the cooled solution to wash your eyes several times a day.
6. Green Tea
Green tea has many anti-inflammaNatural Home Remedies for Itchy Eyestory properties and soothes itchy eyes. Boil two bags of green tea in one cup of distilled water. Cool the solution completely and use it to flush your eyes out twice a day.
While using the above remedies, you should take care to ensure that your hands and all the ingredients you use are clean. You don’t want to cause an infection or irritate your eyes further.
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Kitchens, S., “Do Cucumbers Really Help With Puffy Eyes? Pros Weigh In On This Beauty Legend,” HuffPost, October 16, 2012; http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/entry/puffy-eyes-undereyes-cucumbers-cures-remedies_n_1964329.
Boskabady, M.H., “Pharmacological Effects of Rosa Demascena,” Iranian Journal of Basic Medical Sciences, July-August 2011; 14(4): 295-307 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3586833/.
Cremers, S.L., “Green Tea Extract and Dry Eye treatment,” Sandra Lora Cremers MD, FACS, http://eyedoc2020.blogspot.ca/2013/07/green-tea-extract-and-dry-eye-treatment.html.