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How to Get Rid of Red Eyes After Smoking Cannabis

When smoking cannabis, you’ve probably encountered the “red-eye syndrome”. It’s easy to tell when someone has been smoking cannabis because the white of the eye (sclera) turns red. Luckily for you, it’s completely harmless and doesn’t affect you in any way, other than being a quicker indicator to others that you smoke.

Want to find out how to help alleviate red eyes? We have gathered a few reasons why this happens and how you can get rid of it.

Why do your eyes turn red?

To start, many people assume that red eyes are caused by the smoke exhaled after smoking flower or a vape, but this is actually untrue. Although smoking obviously produces a lot of smoke that could get in your eyes, that’s not actually the reason for your red eyes. No matter how you take in cannabis, your eyes will still turn red.

The reason is actually that of the THC inside of cannabis. This is the compound that gives you the euphoric feeling you’ve come to expect when smoking, and one of the effects it has is decreasing your blood pressure. This ultimately leads to the expansion of our blood vessels to allow more blood to flow around our body. In the case of eyes, it means that our ocular capillaries are dilated so that they can take in more blood. These expanded blood vessels make the white of the eye appear red, hence the effect.

However, THC also reduces the intraocular pressure of the eye. Increased intraocular pressure is a key factor when it comes to glaucoma diseases. Lowering the intraocular pressure is actually the way we battle against glaucoma. If left untreated, it could lead to a severe loss of vision and also blindness. This is why THC strains can actually help to lower intraocular pressure anywhere between 25 to 30%.

The amount your eyes “turn” red will vary from person to person. If you smoke the same strain with someone else, you might notice that their eyes stay relatively white while yours can go extremely red, or vice versa. A number of factors can affect this, such as your genetics, sex, health and also how often you smoke. The redness is completely dependant on your blood pressure and it can last varying different timeframes as well.

Getting rid of red eyes

The most common way to get rid of bloodshot eyes after smoking is to use over-the-counter eye drops that are designed to overcome allergies. These contain tetryzoline which is an alpha agonist that causes dilated blood vessels to constrict. As previously mentioned, THC makes blood vessels and capillaries dilate, thus causing the redness. Eye drops can reverse this effect, returning your eyes to their normal whiteness and helping to relieve red eyes very quickly. This is a safe method to get rid of bloodshot eyes and it’s recommended that you read through the manual in order to get a good understanding of how to use them properly.

This is generally the best and fastest way to get rid of red eyes, but there are also other alternatives that can help constrict the blood vessels to reduce redness. This includes consuming chocolate, more sodium or even caffeine.

However, a misconception that you might hear is drinking more water to help you reduce redness in the eyes. This is sadly entirely false. Red eyes are not a sign of dehydration so no amount of water intake will help you get rid of bloodshot eyes.

The redness in your eyes isn’t anything serious, so you shouldn’t be alarmed. There’s nothing to be worried about and you’re generally not going to suffer any negative effects if do you have red eyes, but it can be worrying if you’re expected to attend a meeting or a work-related event.

So in short, get yourself some eye drops! They’re the fastest and easiest way to get rid of bloodshot eyes, and you’ll typically find them at the nearest pharmacy or convenience store!

How to Get Rid of Red Eyes After Smoking Cannabis When smoking cannabis, you’ve probably encountered the “red-eye syndrome”. It’s easy to tell when someone has been smoking cannabis because the

How to Prevent Red Eyes After Consuming Cannabis

Tuesday January 7, 2020

T here’s nothing wrong with smoking some weed every now and then to chill yourself out or make your daily routine a little more fun. As long as you’re not operating heavy machinery, performing surgery, or running point on a hostage negotiation, you’re usually all good. Still, it’s better to stay discreet when possible. Being stoned is pretty fun, but there are few thoughts that will harsh your experience faster than “Everyone around me knows that I’m high.”

Of course, you already know the basics of how to cover up a quick toke. You can hide the smell by smoking outside, minting up your breath, changing your clothes, or using a dry herb vape. However, the one thing that’s hardest to hide is a case of red eyes. There’s a reason that it’s one of the most well-known signs of having indulged in some herb.

While some smokers never have to deal with red eyes, they are a lucky few. (They probably never get cottonmouth either.) Others deal with red eye their first few times smoking weed and then never again. Other consumers deal with it every time as though it’s some type of curse.

Whether or not you get red eye has a lot to do with your genetics, the strain being smoked, and other factors. For example, the more often you indulge, the less prominent the red eye will be. Much like time perception, your body seems to get used to it and adjust the more you do it.

What Causes Red Eyes After Smoking Cannabis?

Despite what you may think, it’s not the irritants in the smoke wafting up from your bowl or your joint that give your peepers that “Just went through a wind tunnel” look. It’s not from the coughing either. One of the effects of THC, the cannabinoid molecule doing most of the heavy lifting in marijuana, is that it can lower blood pressure. Unfortunately, where this effect is most noticeable is in the windows to the soul, your eyes.

As the pressure lowers in your inner eyeball, the small capillaries and blood vessels running through the whites of your eyes have more room to stretch out – thus, they become much more visible.

On the plus side, this is exactly why cannabis has been used as a medicine to treat glaucoma for years. By lowering intraocular pressure in the eye, it alleviates impaired vision by increasing the flow of nutrients into the ocular nerves. There’s even evidence that cannabis can help treat a number of symptoms of eye problems, and may help to prevent long term retinal damage.

How to Prevent or Get Rid of Red Eyes

Red eye from smoking cannabis will go away on its own after a couple of hours. But if you’re in a situation that you can’t just wait out, there are a couple of options that can help you recover faster so that you don’t have to blame a fake diagnosis of dual pink eye.

Eye Drops

This is of course, the standard red eye relief. Whether the owners of eye drop brands like Visine know it or not, stoners have helped to put their kids and grandkids through college since the 1970s. (They know).

If you know you’re going to be burning one down before attending a social gathering, it’s best to put a small bottle of eye drops in your pocket or purse (there’s a reason they’re sold in travel size). If you forgot yours at home or need it one the fly, they’ll be available in any drug store, grocery store, convenience store, or gas station (there’s a reason for that too). Just one or two drops and your Incredible Hulk-sized blood vessels will shrink back down to Bruce Banner proportions in no time. Only use the recommended amount, though.

Drink Some Water

Sometimes red eye can be caused by dehydration from other issues, such as drinking too much caffeine or not staying hydrated on a hot day. A glass or two of water may help clear your whites out a little. It’s also a healthy choice for your body and may help with any dry mouth you’re experiencing.

Cold Compress or Ice Pack

If you’re near a refrigerator, or even a sink with frigid water, a cold compress can make a big difference. Like some other body parts, blood vessels shrink down when they get cold. This should hide the red and also wake you up a little.

Get a towel or cloth wet, put some ice in it if it’s available, and hold it onto your closed eyes for about 5-10 minutes. When you no longer look like you stared into a wind tunnel, take off the compress and go on with your day.

Low-THC Strains

If red eyes are a regular issue, then the solution might be to decrease the amount of THC that you are consuming when you smoke up. Since THC is the main culprit, avoiding it should fix the problem. Low THC strains don’t necessarily mean less of a good time. There are still plenty of cannabinoids and terpenes that combine through the entourage effect into a fantastic experience.

Sunglasses

Look, if you can’t get to some eye drops or a cold compress, your options are already pretty limited. You can either lie about having just watched a particularly emotional episode of This Is Us, or you can throw on some shades and be the coolest person in the room, or at least the most mysterious. If you’re outside and the sun’s out, even better.

Red eye is not a huge deal and something that can be easily taken care of with a little planning ahead or a little triage in the moment. Like dry mouth, it’s a minor annoyance that comes with indulging the herb. And like dry mouth, a little preparation can go a long way towards enjoying your high and the rest of your day.

Do you have any tips for avoiding red eyes after consuming cannabis? Share your thoughts and experiences with other readers in the comments below.

Everyone knows that consuming cannabis poses the risk of having red eyes in return. Luckily, there are several ways to prevent getting red eyes after smoking weed. Learn the top tips and tricks for making sure your eyes don't turn red after consuming marijuana. ]]>