Bloodshot eyes (red eyes) is a condition in which the sclera (which is normally white) changes its color and becomes red. The redness of the sclera develops as a consequence of the inflammation and enlargement of the blood vessels in the sclera. This feature may in some cases require immediate medical attention while it can also occur due to some less serious conditions. Apart from red sclera patients can additionally complain about pain, irritation and problems with vision.Causes of Bloodshot Eyes in the Morning
In many cases bloodshot eyes in the morning occur due to fatigue, insufficient sleep, eyestrain or irritation. Improper diet, excessive consumption of alcohol and smoking as well as certain cosmetic products can be responsible for reddening of the sclera, too.
Furthermore, the presence of a foreign body in the eye always leads to the irritation and consequent reddening of the sclera. Eye infections, subconjunctival hemorrhage, glaucoma, iritis and corneal scratches are several more causes of bloodshot eyes. Any trauma to the eye is associated with bloodshot eyes.
Bloodshot eyes in the morning also develop as the consequence of environmental factors such as dry weather, sun exposure, exposure to dust etc. What is more these signs can occur in people who are already suffering from certain medical conditions such as cold, allergies, vitamin B2 and B6 deficiencies and the lack of certain amino acids (histamine, lysine or phenylalanine). And finally, bloodshot eyes in the morning may occur in people under stress, those suffering from diabetes, high blood pressure, liver or kidney disorders, glandular fever and they may even occur in pregnant women.
Presentation of Bloodshot Eyes
In some patients reddening of the sclera may spontaneously subside within a few days. On the other hand, the condition may linger for a while and needs to be treated according to the underlying cause. Apart from reddening of the sclera patients can also complain about the itchy sensation in the affected eye, pain and problems with vision. In some cases (infections) there is an eye discharge. In case there is a severe pain and the redness does not subside the person is due to consult an ophthalmologist as soon as possible.
Treatment for Bloodshot Eyes in the Morning
Treatment depends on the cause of bloodshot eyes. In case of the allergic reaction the symptoms and signs are easily eliminated with antihistamines. If the redness occurs due to an irritation caused by insufficient tear production or increased tear loss a person may benefit from artificial tears. Infections are treated with suitable medications (antibiotics, antiviral drugs or antifungal medications). And finally, if there is a subconjunctival hemorrhage it is treated according to the cause that has led to bleeding underneath the conjunctiva.