Applying Eye drops help treat a host of eye issues ranging from irritation, redness, dryness and allergies. Regardless of the reasons for using the eye drops, it is essential to know the correct way to safely put the drops in your eyes.
It can be quite challenging to put eye drops in the eyes, especially if you are doing it for the first time. Here are the steps to apply eye drops the right way.
- Wash your hands clean with soap and water. Dry your hands with a towel.
- If you are applying eye drops on your own, it is helpful to use a mirror or lie down. You can also ask someone to check if you are putting the drops correctly.
- Check to see if the dropper tip is working correctly
- Make sure to not touch the dropper against anything; it should be kept clean
- Tilt your head back, look up towards the ceiling with both your eyes and pull the lower eye lid down to form a pocket
- With the other hand, hold the tip of the dropper as close to the eye as possible
- Put a single drop in the pocket with the dropper and remove your finger from the lower lid
- Keep your eyes closed for a couple of minutes. When you keep the eyes closed, it allows for better penetration of the medicine and therefore more effectiveness.
- During this time, refrain from squeezing or blinking your eyes
- Keep a finger on the tear duct and use gentle pressure
- Remove any excess liquid from the face
- If the instruction is to use more than one drop, wait for a few minutes before putting the next drop
- Replace the dropper and tighten the cap of the bottle. Do not wipe the dropper
- Keep the bottle cap on a clean surface such as a tissue else this can be a source of contamination. If the bottle cap does get contaminated, use a tissue to wipe it clean. Keep in mind to close the bottle cap securely as open bottles carry a greater risk of being contaminated. Avoid keeping the bottle inside your pocket, in the car or in direct sunlight where there are chances of it getting heated up.
- Wash your hands again to remove any medication
- If you have been prescribed both eye ointment and drops to soothe red or irritated eyes, use the drops first, else the ointment may not allow the absorption of the eye drops when you apply it
- If you have to put two eye drops, wait for some time after you have applied the first type and then apply the second medicine
While using eye drops, remember these points:
- Follow the instructions of your doctor
- Do not allow anyone else to use your eye drops and do not use anyone
- Do not miss any dosage
- Do not use more or less than the drops recommended
- Store medication in a cool, dry place
- Keep the medications out of the reach of children
- Throw away the old bottle and get a new one after the recommended else’s eye drops
- While using eye drops, you may get a feeling that the eye drops are going down your throat. It is normal.
- Some people are allergic to certain eye drops. If your symptoms become worse after using the eye drops, consult your doctor immediately.
- Remove your contact lenses when applying eye drops. Some ingredients in the eye drops can get accumulated in the lenses and cause harm.
Some of the eye drops can be irritating to the eyes and cause a burning sensation. One way to deal with this is to put some artificial tears before you use the eye drops. You should wait for at least 5 minutes after that to put your eye drops.
Learning the way to use eye drops can take practice and time. You can use artificial tears to practice so that your eye medications do not go waste. If you face any problem while using the eye drops, consult your eye doctor. Make sure to carry your eye drops to every appointment with your doctor. This way, your doctor will be aware of the drops that you are using, and any queries or confusions can be easily sorted out.