Eye Care information
Eye drops come in a number of different formulations. Some are available by prescription only and are used to treat chronic dry eyes, seasonal allergies or infections. There are also many over-the-counter (OTC) drops that may be used for transient eye irritation called by allergies, or dry eyes.
Prescription Eye Drops are numerous. Some of the more well—known help the eyes produce tears and may assist with chronic dry eye. Olopatadine is a prescription-only variant used to treat itching, weepiness, and redness caused by allergies. Numerous prescription drops or ointments contain antibiotics and are used to treat eye infections caused by pinkeye, or eye injuries like scratched corneas.
Unlike OTC eye drops, prescription medications do need to be ordered by a medical professional. Most of them do prove very effective in treating the conditions for which they are used. Any drops or ointment used to treat infections should only be used by the person for whom they are prescribed, and should be discarded when the infection has cleared.
OTC eye drops come in numerous preparations as well. There are a plethora of artificial tears for treating chronic dry eyes. These do not cause the eyes to produce more tears, but the drops themselves lubricate the eyes and may help with dry eyes. Some OTC drops are targeted at reducing redness in the eyes, and may be helpful if one has bloodshot eyes. Other types are targeted toward the allergy sufferer, and may provide some short-term relief from itchy eyes due to allergies.
Most of the commercial brands and generic OTC eye drops do contain a high number of preservatives. These actually may irritate the eyes if the drops are used over long periods of time. They should, therefore, be considered for short-term use only. In fact, drops that help reduce redness may cause the eyes to be very dry and will not treat eye infections like pink eye.
OTC eye drops will generally not work when an eye is infected. In fact, one should not use over-the-counter products if one suspects pink eye or injury to the eye. Instead, one should see a healthcare provider to rule out infection. Pink eye is particularly contagious, and if you have used OTC eye drops at the onset of infection, you should again discard them immediately. As with any drops, use is intended for one person alone, so one should always consider buying each family member his/her own medication.
How do I Choose the Best Eye Drop for Dry Eyes?
One of the most basic ways to get rid of dry eyes is to use an eye drop meant for this purpose. There are many on the market, but not all of them work equally well for this condition. The first type of eye drop for dry eyes to try is the kind that is free of preservatives, which will likely just irritate your eyes more; also avoid drops intended for other afflictions, such as allergies. If this kind does not work for you, the next step is to try drops that stay in the eye a bit longer than traditional drops, such as the kind in gel form. Finally, you may need to get a prescription for a quality eye drop for dry eyes, especially if your case is severe enough to include inflammation.
Most eye drops on the market that work best are free of preservatives, since this type of substance tends to cause eye irritation. Preservatives are typically used to lend drops a longer shelf life, as they inhibit the growth of bacteria over time. In most cases, though, you can get the same benefit by using single-use drops, which usually come in tiny plastic tubes that fit into a purse or pocket. These single-use tubes are usually the best way to prevent bacterial growth in an eye drop for dry eyes that lacks preservatives. On the other hand, you can also typically use drops that come in a regular bottle as long as you keep the cap on it, and also avoid touching the tip to your eye.
You will probably find that most drops relieve dryness for a few minutes, but the liquid seems to disappear quickly. If you want a soothing feeling that lasts a bit longer, you should try out gel drops. These can be squeezed into the eye like drops, but since they are more viscous, they stay in the eye longer, therefore providing extended relief. Of course, since these drops tend to sit on the surface of the eye and make it blurry for a few minutes, they should not be used while driving. Instead, consider using this type of eye drop for dry eyes at night before bed.
If none of these drops work for you, your case might be severe enough to warrant going to the eye doctor to get a prescription eye drop for dry eyes. There are some that not only add moisture to the eye, but help it create its own tears so that you eventually do not need to use artificial eye drops. Some kinds of prescription drops also help reduce inflammation, which can relieve the pain associated with eyes so dry that they are red and irritated most of the time.
How Do I Choose the Best Eye Drops for Cataract Surgery ?
Cataract surgery is a common outpatient eye surgery that is most often performed on individuals of advanced age, but may be necessary for anyone who has impaired vision due to clouding of the eye’s lens. Patients will be required to use eye drops for cataract surgery. Anti-inflammatory and antibiotic eye drops are standard, but the type and frequency of use may vary depending on the patient.
Anyone who has ever had cataract surgery will attest to the fact that eye drops are a routine part of the procedure, both before and after the procedure. The doctor performing the surgery instructs patients on the use of eye drops for cataract surgery and the directions should be followed precisely. In nearly all cases, prescription eye drops will be involved. There may be instances where over-the-counter eye drops are recommended for dryness or allergy, but a prescription will be required for anti-inflammatory and antibiotic eye drops.
Choosing eye drops for cataract surgery is not typically left up to the patient, but in the event an OTC drop is required, the patient may be faced with the necessity of selecting the best brand. If your doctor recommends a specific brand, you can always compare similar, cheaper store brands if available, but be sure the active ingredient is identical in name and concentration. If you are concerned about cost, ask your doctor if a store brand equivalent is acceptable.
When it comes to prescription eye drops for cataract surgery, the surgeon will supply you with a written script and instructions. Patients concerned about prescription drug insurance and cost can always ask in advance which eye drops will be prescribed before and after the surgery and research and compare costs at local pharmacies. If cost is a serious issue as sometimes happens with specific name brands or tier 3 drugs, ask your doctor if a suitable generic substitute is available. You can also ask if he or she can provide samples.
Choosing the types of eye drops used for cataract surgery is not the sole responsibility of the patient, but following the instructions for use is. If you find yourself unable to self-administer eye drops, look for an eye drop dispenser, which is a simple medical device that aids the process. You can often find these available at larger pharmacies and through online medical supply retailers. You can also check with your eye doctor. Be sure to understand the dosage and frequency of use for all prescribed eye drops and call your doctor or pharmacist with any questions.
How Do I Choose the Best Eye Drops for Infection?
Choose the best eye drops for infection according to the type of infection you have, for example, bacterial or viral. Eyes are sensitive and delicate, so only well-known and trusted brands of eye drops should be used. Visit your eye doctor for a diagnosis and obtain a prescription for the best type of eye drops for the particular infection you have. For regular known infections such as conjunctivitis, over-the-counter eye drops containing ingredients such as chloramphenicol, can be rapidly effective. If symptoms persist, visit your eye doctor.
If you are suffering from a condition that is new or unknown to you, be sure to consult your doctor or eye specialist. The best eye drops for infection in this case will be chosen by your doctor dependent on your diagnosis. Eye infections can be classified as fungal, bacterial, viral or parasitic, and often an effective treatment can only be obtained by prescription.
Use trial and error to choose a brand of eye drops that work best for you. Ask friends and family which eye drops they prefer. Speak to your pharmacist as they are knowledgeable on minor eye infections, and can advise you on the most effective treatment and any new products on the market.
Choose the best eye drops for infection according to the speed at which they claim to be effective. Three to five day treatment times are normal. Ensure that the product has been thoroughly tested and comes with comprehensive safety instructions. Only buy eye drops for infection from a known and trusted pharmacist or drug store, and never purchase medications or miracle cures from unknown websites or traders. If your symptoms have not improved after two days, you may not be using the best treatment and you should consult your eye doctor.
The best eye drops for infections should not cause allergic reactions, burning or stinging. Well known over-the-counter eye drops usually contain chloramphenicol which is a type of antibiotic. This is best for treating bacterial eye infections because it is effective against a wide range of bacteria and is possibly the best choice for regular known infections such as bacterial conjunctivitis.
Viral conjunctivitis varies in severity and often goes away on its own. Use lubricating eye drops to reduce soreness. Some typical symptoms of eye infection such as itching and redness can actually be caused by allergies. In this case, lubricating eye drops can be used along with allergy medicines as recommended by your doctor or pharmacist. Fungal eye infections can be treated with corticosteroid eye drops. These drops, available on prescription, can cause glaucoma if repeatedly used in the long term.