We hear it all the time from patients. They experience redness and itchiness in their eyes, so they go to urgent care or their primary care doc for treatment. The physician prescribes eye drops that provide temporary relief, but they find the drops don’t fix their issues for very long. So they go back and repeat the search for answers over and over again.
We’re not here to give over-the-counter eye drops a bad name, but we often find that they’re just a temporary fix for a much larger issue. At Brill Eye Center, we’re dedicated to using decades of experience and state-of-the-art technology to get to the root cause of your eye issues. Many patients come to us after several frustrating attempts to fix their dry, red, and itchy eyes. And when they leave, they find lasting results with our proven treatment methods.
Today, we’ll discuss some OTC eye drop alternatives and ways that patients can treat the itching or redness in their eyes. Our team of eye care specialists in the Kansas City area are highly knowledgeable, experienced, and qualified to provide unprecedented care and lasting results for your eye issues.
Consider Your Lifestyle/Activities
The way you live may cause harm to your eyes and may lead to itchiness and redness. For example, if you like to spend a lot of time outdoors, you may need to take additional safety measures to protect your eyes. Irritants such as debris, smoke, dust, and pollen can not only cause immediate irritation to your eyes, but consistent exposure can lead to long-term inflammation and dry eye. Exposing your eyes to the sun without proper sunglasses can also contribute to issues that get worse over time, like macular degeneration and cataracts
Similarly, certain specific activities may contribute to your ocular symptoms. Particularly if you’re an athlete, the sport you play could be a factor in your red and inflamed eyes. Sports like football, skiing, baseball, fishing, and others all have the potential to expose your face to inflammatory concerns and safety hazards. Other than just acting as a barrier to the wind and particulate matters, each activity should have the proper wavelengths filtered out.
For athletes and those who enjoy the outdoors, Brill Eye Center offers a variety of different sun and sports glasses—Costa, RayBan, Serengeti, Oakley, Maui Jim, Bolle— that can be manufactured with prescription lenses. Not only do they help protect you from the elements and harmful UV rays, but they can even improve your vision and ultimately, your performance.
Being indoors doesn’t grant you immunity from these issues either. Besides the typical inflammatory agents like dust and pollen, mold around your house also has the potential to cause ocular discomfort. Pet owners might also struggle with red or itchy eyes, as pet hair and dander can cause irritation. Special prescription antihistamine and mast cell stabilizer eye drops can work wonders in mere minutes.
Finally, it’s also important to consider how much time you’re spending in front of a digital screen. Extended screen usage has been proven to reduce blinking, which can lead to inflammation and other symptoms of Dry Eye disease. Fortunately, there are several prevention and treatment methods to help combat this specific issue. This includes special protective and relaxing computer glasses made to your specific needs.
Wear Sunblock & Use Creams
Believe it or not, your eyes can suffer from sunburn the same way that your skin can. Consistent exposure to natural or artificial UV light may not only be a factor in your red eyes, but failing to take the proper precautions can eventually lead to serious damage.
Areas inside of your eyes such as the cornea, retina, conjunctiva, and lens, are all at risk for damage from extended exposure to the sun. Photokeratitis is just one condition that can occur from this exposure, and it can lead to painful long-term damage to your eye.
So if you’re looking for eye drop alternatives, sunglasses may be an effective method of prevention for your symptoms. Also, long-term exposure to ultraviolet light will turn the normally smooth and wet part of the eye that is white into a yellowed and thickened structure called a pinguecula or a structure called a pterygium that can grow onto the surface of the cornea and distort vision and cause chronic redness. These changes may require surgery to remove. Ask us if you think you are developing these adverse changes and how we can remediate them.
Our observations of your eyes are done by looking through a microscope, called a slitlamp, at the front of your eyes. It is amazing how much detail we can view that allows us to make an accurate diagnosis, especially with the assistance of specific dyes like fluorescein and lissamine green.
Breakdown of the corneal tissue is easily disclosed with the use of these dyes. Don’t worry, there is no pain with this type of examination. Using these preventative measures will help provide long-term protection to your eyes, eyelids, and face, rather than just the temporary relief that eye drops sometimes provide.
The key point is that a proper diagnosis is necessary to develop a plan to take care of your painful and red eyes. The diagnosis naturally leads to getting to the root of the problem. This may include an assessment that you are deficient in either the watery layer of your tear film or the lipid (oily) layer of the tear film. Studies show that 86% of the time, people are deficient in the oily layer. Most OTC drops are designed to treat a deficiency in the watery layer, not the lipid layer, interestingly enough. Oil-based eye drops, however, are not very popular due to their propensity to blur vision. Treatments like BlephEx, ZEST, LipiFlow, ILux and Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) are featured treatments at Brill Eye Center. Specific testing will point to the best and most economical treatment path for your eyes.
Get Professional Care
The most lasting eye drop alternative for your red or itchy eyes is to seek professional help. Far too often, people dealing with these issues either brush them off as not a big deal or they aren’t seeking the right care.
What you may initially brush off as just temporary eye irritation may actually be a sign of something much deeper. Itchiness and red eyes are both prominent symptoms of issues such as Dry Eye disease or Ocular Rosacea. These are both conditions that require expert care and not over-the-counter or prescription eye drops.
That’s where Brill Eye Center comes in. Instead of continuing to take care into your own hands, you can get expert help from licensed professionals. We have a proven process for dealing with eye issues that include screening, diagnosis, treatment, healing, and maintenance.
With our advanced technology, we’re able to get to find the main factors that are causing your eye discomfort. Once you understand why your eyes are constantly burning, red, or itchy, you can take the steps to properly treat them.
Most patients just don’t know what actions they take that put them in situations that cause inflammation; they just don’t have the proper information and education to treat them. When you get professional care, you better equip yourself for positive long-term wellness.
When to Use Eye Drops
Make no mistake, there’s nothing inherently wrong with eye drops. As a temporary solution, they’re really quite effective and can help provide instant relief from pain and irritation. Scientifically, eye drops bring hydration and lubrication to your eyes. When you put the solution into your eye, the drops both moisten and lubricate the surface of the eye.
When you close your eyelid, that solution spreads to the entire eye and provides it with proper hydration. This spread of hydration provides immediate relief from the discomfort caused by particulates and irritants.
That said, they’re a temporary solution designed only for occasional use. They aren’t designed to be a long-term answer to your issues. If you’re using them only once in a while, they may be appropriate.
If you consistently deal with redness or discomfort in your eyes, that indicates that there is a deeper problem that’s not being addressed.
What Sets Brill Eye Center Apart
As you’ve probably noticed by now, we work with many patients who have dealt with chronic eye discomfort and have exhausted all their options. Often, we are the patient’s fourth, fifth, or even sixth eye doctor that they have sought out to fix their dry eye! The one thing that stays consistent, however, is that we’re generally the ones who make the proper diagnosis that leads to treatment of the root cause of their dry eye problems. Our methods use a scientific approach to collect data to make a proper diagnosis and use technology to solve the problems discovered.
We provide patients with the eye drop alternatives they need but haven’t had access to anywhere else. The reason for that is simple: we are uniquely situated in the KC metro area with a combination of technology, expertise, and proven results. Most other eye doctors and eye clinics use an obsolete protocol that was developed in the 1970s that we know is just not effective. With the advent of new information and technology, our thoughts about dry eye have been revolutionized. Nowadays, advanced technology is necessary to take care of these problems once and for all. Brill Eye Center has made the investment of time and energy to have the appropriate tools to make the right diagnosis and offer the right treatment modalities.
What really sets us apart, however, is that we’re dedicated to continuing that research well into the future. Part of our mission is to always stay on the cutting-edge of treatment and to always look for ways to improve our methods. Dr. Brill is nationally recognized as a key opinion leader and invited to give lectures and presentations on dry eye topics.
We’re confident that our experienced team and time-tested protocol will produce the lasting results that you’ve been searching for when it comes to eye drop alternatives. With our individually customized treatments, we’ll come up with the best plan for you and your specific needs.
Ready to Get Lasting Eye Relief from Actual Eye Drop Alternatives? Visit Brill Eye Center in Mission Today!
For over 38 years, Brill Eye Center has been at the forefront of innovative eye care. Our wealth of experience, combined with advanced technology and personalized care, allows for a rewarding experience that produces lasting results for our patients. We pride ourselves on putting the “I care” back in eye care, and we won’t rest until you’ve achieved your optimal outcome.
If you’re tired of the run-around and temporary results from eye drops, contact our office in Mission today! From Kansas City to Topeka, to Wichita and Manhattan, we’ve helped thousands of patients across Kansas and Missouri (as well as the United States) find eye drop alternatives and ultimately treat their underlying eye conditions. Contact us today and see the benefits that advanced eye care can provide you!