Red Eyes: Why Cannabis Causes Them And What To Do About It
There is no avoiding it: Cannabis often causes red eye. Let’s have a look at why this happens, and what exactly you can do about it.
The dreaded red eye. It is a tell-tale sign of marijuana use, and one a lot of cannabis users are very conscious about – especially in countries where enjoying a bit of bud is a big no-no. There is actually no singular cause, although some factors weigh in heavier than others. The good news is there are steps you can take to try and prevent and minimize its impact.
Try Open Your Eyes to get rid of your red eyes!
The three causes of Red Eyes
The primary cause of eye reddening is a drop in blood pressure. The cannabinoids found within cannabis, no matter if smoked or ingested, are known to reduce blood pressure and dilate blood vessels - and the blood vessels in your eyes are no exception. As they dilate, they become visible against the whites of your eye. This is actually the precise reason marijuana is an effective treatment for glaucoma, as the dilated blood vessels decrease the mounting pressure on the eye, preventing glaucoma related damage to the retinal nerve.
The second factor that plays part in creating red eyes is smoke. Some people’s eyes become irritated when exposed to smoke, and if they are shut in an unventilated area smoking pot, then their eyes inevitably become red and sore.
The third factor is hydration. As you can probably imagine, when you are dehydrated, your eyes dry out. This in turn causes irritation, which causes your eyes to become red. Water is used by the body to remove things like THC from the blood stream, so whilst cannabis isn’t believed to actively dehydrate you, it can certainly be a by-product of its use.
How to Treat Your Blood-shot Eyes
As dehydration can cause your eyes to become irritated and dry, it is very important to drink lots of water. Not only will this help with your eyes, it will also make the effects of cotton mouth and the munchies much less profound. Ideally, you want to get an additional 5 glasses of water in you to minimize the problem.
Use Eye Drops
Eye drops are a quick way to ensure your eyeballs are lubricated and irritation free. It can act as a natural barrier from smoke, and minimize the impact of blood-shot eyes. Don’t go overboard though (no more than 3 drops per eye), as excess eye drops could actually increase the severity of redness.
If worst comes to worst, pop on a pair of sunglasses. Careful though, as you quickly may look a little odd sitting in your living room sporting a cool pair of shades. But if you are out and about during the day, it is a quick and easy way to cover up your eyes.
Unfortunately there is no sure fire way to prevent red eyes when it comes to marijuana, as its causes are many and varied. All you can do is take the measure available to you, and hope for the best. So stay hydrated, and keep a bottle of eye drops in your pocket!