Lifestyle and home remedies

By Mayo Clinic Staff

Try these tips to help you cope with the signs and symptoms of pink eye:

  • Apply a compress to your eyes. To make a compress, soak a clean, lint-free cloth in water and wring it out. Then apply it gently to your closed eyelids for a few minutes several times a day. Generally, a cool water compress will feel the most soothing. But you can also use a warm compress if that feels better to you.

    If pink eye affects only one eye, don't touch both eyes with the same cloth. This reduces the risk of spreading an infection from one eye to the other.

  • Use eyedrops. Over-the-counter eyedrops called artificial tears may relieve symptoms. Some eyedrops contain antihistamines or other medications that can be helpful for people with allergic conjunctivitis.

    Avoid eyedrops for red eye (Visine, Clear Eyes) because they tend to work for a while then cause rebound redness.

  • Stop wearing contact lenses. If you wear contact lenses, stop wearing them until your eyes feel better. How long you'll need to go without contact lenses depends on what's causing your conjunctivitis.

    Ask your doctor whether you should throw away your disposable contacts, cleaning solution or lens case. If your lenses aren't disposable, clean them thoroughly before using them again.

  • Avoid whatever causes your symptoms. This tip may be helpful if you have allergic conjunctivitis.
  • Wash your clothes frequently. This tip may be helpful if you have allergic conjunctivitis.
  • Bathe or shower before bedtime. This tip may be helpful if you have allergic conjunctivitis.
July 16, 2015