Burning eyes: Causes and home remedies

Burning eyes: Causes and home remedies

What are Burning Eyes?

Burning eyes describes an uncomfortable condition whereby your eyes feel a stinging effect or are just plain irritated. They can lead to other more serious eye conditions if left untreated.

Although burning eyes can be easily diagnosed easily and addressed over-the-counter medications, specialised medical treatment may be needed in some cases. If you encounter vision loss, consult your doctor immediately [1].

Spend some time outdoors to give your eyes a break. 

What are the causes of burning eyes? 

1. Blepharitis 

 Blepharitis happens when you experience flaky, dandruff-like deposits at the bottom  of the eyelids due to a bacterial infection. You may also encounter symptoms including eye redness and swelling.

2. Dry eye

Another cause of burning eyes is when you experience dry eyes. Dry eyes happen when your tear glands fail to produce ample tears or healthy tears. Dry eye tend to happen more often in women and older people. Moreover, this condition can arise from contact lenses. You may encounter pain, eye redness, blurred vision, and heavy eyelids when you have dry eyes. 

3. Eye allergies

Another cause of burning eyes is allergic conjunctivitis, an eye allergy that happens when irritants enter the eye. Your body’s response is to produce histamines which can result in burning eyes. You may also encounter symptoms like tearing, swelling, redness, and itching. Pollen, dust, smoke, perfumes, pet dander, and foods are some of the more prevalent triggers of eye allergies. 

4. Ocular rosacea

When you have ocular rosacea, you may suffer from inflamed eyelids. It affects people experiencing acne rosacea. This is a skin condition that involves redness and flushing of the face.

You may exhibit other symptoms of ocular rosacea including sensitivity to light and pain. Be sure to consult your doctor as ocular rosacea can lead to vision loss.

5. Eye sunburn

If your eyes are over-exposed to ultraviolet (UV) light from the sun’s rays, your cornea may have a sunburn and you may have photokeratitis. Light sensitivity, pain, watering, and seeing halos around lights are other examples of an eye sunburn.

6. Pterygium

Pterygium happens when there is tissue growth on the white area of the eye and typically develops nearest to the nose or in the outer portion of the eye.

Environmental exposure and UV light lead to this condition. Burning eyes, itching, swelling, and redness as well as fleshy growth that can cover the cornea are some symptoms. 

7. Conjunctivitis 

Conjunctivitis or pink eye is a contagious condition that happens when you have an inflammation in the transparent membrane. This disease lines the eyes and envelops the white part of the eyeball. This membrane is called the conjunctiva.

As small blood vessels become inflamed, they become more visible. One symptom of conjunctivitis is red, irritated-looking eyes. Allergies, bacteria or viruses cause the condition as well as an insufficiently opened tear duct in newborn babies.

Consult your doctor if you have dry, itchy, burning, or red eyes, discharge leaving one or both eyes, and increased watering of your eyes that fails to subside within a day. Antibiotics or other mitigating treatments are needed to stop the risk of spreading the eye disease.

Home Remedies

The remedies for burning eyes often differ based on the root cause of the condition.Antibiotic eye drops are used to address burning eyes due to a bacterial eye infection.

1. Clean around the eyes

Cleaning the eyelid margins at the base of the eyelashes with a gentle cleanser and lukewarm water can soothe burning and irritated eyes.

2. Eye drops

Eye drops to reduce redness and improve eye comfort can alleviate dry or burning eyes. 

3. Warm compress

A warm compress comprising a clean, soft towel in warm water can soothe burning eyes. 

4.  Antihistamine eye drops or tablets

Antihistamine eye drops or oral tablets from the pharmacy can address allergic reactions in the eyes.

5. Supplements

Fish oil and flaxseed are examples of oral supplements to soothe burning eyes, especially for people with ocular rosacea.

6. Constant hydration 

Drinking plenty of water moistens your eyes and reduces dryness.

7. Regular eye breaks 

Regular breaks from digital screens can help decrease eye dryness and irritation.

8. Wear sunglasses

Sunglasses can shield your eyes from UV light as well as the burning eyes that may result. 

Consult your eye doctor for medical attention if you have the following symptoms. Also, remember to sign up for your next eye appointment here. 

  • Eye discharge
  • Blurred vision
  • Eye floaters or flashes of light
  • Double vision
  • Other unexpected symptoms [1] 


  1. “Burning eyes: Causes, remedies & when to see a doctor,” Vision Center, 06-Sep-2022. [Online]. Available: https://www.visioncenter.org/conditions/burning-eyes/. [Accessed: 07-Sep-2022]. 


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