The American Academy of Ophthalmology describes conjunctivitis, colloquially referred to as pink as, as an inflammation of the conjunctiva. The National Eye Institute adds that approximately 3 million pink eye cases take place in the United States alone annually. In a day and age when many over-the-counter antibiotics end up doing more bad than good, we asked ourselves: ‘are there any home remedies for pink eye that really work?’.
Not only is the answer positive, but there is actually a wide range of natural remedies to choose from. From do-it-yourself saline solutions to the power of probiotics, we have offered extensive information and step-by-step instructions for these remedies. Learn about the benefits of these ingredients and how to apply them below.
Learn about the active ingredients in home remedies for pink eye and how they heal the infection.
1. Saline Solution
One of the main objectives of home remedies for pink eye is to disinfect the area naturally. For this, a homemade saline solution can work wonders. When mixed with distilled water, salt fights infection and safely attacks the bacteria causing the conjunctivitis.
- Bring 1 cup of distilled water to a boil.
- Add 1 teaspoon of salt and stir well.
- Wait for it to chill.
- Apply as an eyewash, with the help of an eye dropper.
- Repeat 4-5 times throughout the day to cleanse the affected eye.
2. Cultured Yogurt
The probiotics in cultured yogurt, known as ‘good’ bacteria, help fight the ‘bad’ bacteria causing your infection. Aside from cultured yogurt, breast milk or raw goat or cow milk can be used for the same probiotic content.
- Use 3-4 drops of cultured yogurt on the infected eye to eliminate pathogens.
- Repeat this daily for 3-4 days to naturally treat pink eye.
- Consult a doctor if you don’t start seeing results after several days.
3. Chamomile Tea
Chamomile is a delightful natural ingredient, also known for playing a big role in natural allergy treatment. Among home remedies for pink eye, tea bags stand out among many others thanks to their effectiveness. This herb contains plenty of flavonoids, as well as the active anti-inflammatory compound bisabolol.
- Boil 1 cup of water.
- Add 1 teaspoon of chamomile.
- Steep, strain and cool for 10-15 minutes.
- Add 1 pinch of salt to enhance the astringent properties of the tea.
- Apply to the infected area as an eyewash 1-2 times per day.
* Individuals with ragweed allergies should not use chamomile tea for pink eye treatment.
4. Green Tea
Both green tea and black tea are full of catechins and bioflavonoids. These active compounds provide antibacterial properties that reduce irritation, inflammation and the overall infection. You can use either one of these blends as one of your home remedies for pink eye.
- Brew 2-3 teabags of green tea, depending on how large the area affected with conjunctivitis is.
- Allow to cool a bit and then place in the refrigerator for 5-10 minutes to chill.
- Apply them directly on your infected eye.
- Leave them on for 10 minutes.
- Repeat 4-5 times throughout the day.
5. Colloidal Silver
Colloidal silver is one of the home remedies for pink eye with natural antibacterial effects that battle infection. While silver nitrate was used in the past for treating these types of ailments, colloidal silver is now used for its less irritating effects.
- Use 1-2 drops of 5-10 ppm colloidal silver in every eye.
- Repeat 3-4 times daily for the best impact.
6. Fennel Seeds
Fennel seed oil contains 60% anethole, an active compound that gives it anti-inflammatory qualities. They’re easy to find if you know where to look, and you can prepare fennel seed eyewash in just a few minutes.
- Add 2 teaspoons of fennel seeds to 1 cup of boiling water.
- Stir thoroughly and steep for 8 minutes.
- Strain the mixture and use as an eyewash.
- Repeat on a daily basis for 3-4 days.
7. Baking Soda
There are high chances that you already have baking soda lying around the house, and it’s still easy to get if you don’t. Baking soda home remedies for viral pink eye soothe the pain and promote healing without causing any additional harm.
- Prepare 1 cup of water.
- Add 1 tablespoon of baking soda.
- Mix well.
- Apply as an eyewash 1-2 times daily, as needed.
8. Castor Oil
Castor oil has multiple uses, from naturally treating pink eye to even getting rid of split ends. It is rich in ricinoleic acid, an excellent monounsaturated fatty acid. This particular oil can stop conjunctivitis aggravation and pave your way to eye health again.
- Apply 1 drop of castor oil in the affected eye.
- Repeat 3 times throughout the day.
Goldenseal has a spot among our home remedies for pink eye because it is successful in unblocking tear ducts. Goldean seal is also a good source of berberine, a substance that eliminates bacteria and battles the infection in your eye. In addition to this, goldenseal is a natural astringent and anti-inflammatory agent.
- Boil 1 cup of clean water.
- Add 2 teaspoons of goldenseal and stir well.
- Use the goldenseal water as an eyewash.
- Prepare goldenseal eye drops as an alternative. Combine 1 teaspoon each of comfrey and chamomile in 1 cup of hot water.
- Add 1/8 teaspoon of goldenseal to the cup.
- Steep for 12 minutes, strain and apply as eye drops 2-3 t5imes per day.
Potatoes have natural astringent properties and can be applied topically for treating pink eye. Owing to these benefits, potatoes can reduce swollen eyes infected by conjunctivitis. Make sure that you use only raw potatoes for this remedy to work.
- Cut 1 potato into slices.
- Put the raw slices over your infected eyes for 10-20 minutes.
- Rinse with warm water afterwards.
- Repeat on a daily basis for 3-4 days.
11. Coriander Leaves
Coriander leaves are one of the home remedies for pink eye that also work for other daily health problems, like headaches. Thanks to the phenolic acid in coriander leaves, they become natural antibacterial agents that can be used to relieve conjunctivitis. They also play a significant role in the reduction of pain and swelling, the two main pink eye symptoms.
- Boil 1 handful of coriander leaves in 2 cups of water.
- Strain and wait to chill.
- Use the coriander tea to wash your eyes.
- Apply with the help of a clean compress as an alternative.
12. Coconut Oil
Not only is coconut oil a natural antifungal ingredient, but it also eliminates pathogens and kills bacteria naturally. It is used in a variety of home remedies, like severe tooth pain or vaginal yeast infections.
- Melt about 1-2 tablespoons worth of coconut oil.
- Drench a cotton pad in the oil.
- Gently apply on the affected eyelid.
- Repeat 2-3 times a day for the desired results.
- Incorporate coconut oil into your diet for boosted effects.
13. Holy Basil
Herbal home remedies for pink eye are known for having great results. An example is holy basil, an herb also regarded as tulsi that is reputed for its numerous benefits. It’s a wonderful source of eugenol, an active ingredient with analgesic and antiseptic properties. Additionally, holy basil is antibacterial, antiviral, anti-inflammatory and antifungal all in one.
- Boil 2-3 cups of water.
- Throw a handful of holy basil leaves in it or 2-3 teaspoons of holy basil leaf powder.
- Cover and wait 10 minutes.
- Wash your eyes with the holy basil water.
- Apply with a clean cloth alternatively.
Positive results from studies prove that honey is an amazing natural antibacterial agent. Manuka honey is quite popular for home remedies for pink eye, owing to the high dihydroxyacetone content. Nevertheless, any quality brand of organic honey helps.
- Boil 2 cups of water or milk.
- Add 3 tablespoons of honey.
- Mix thoroughly.
- Allow to chill.
- Use 2-3 drops directly in your eye or apply with a sterile cotton ball.
15. Aloe Vera
Active compounds found in aloe vera like amodin or aloin give it antiviral, antifungal and antibacterial benefits. In addition to this, aloe vera accelerates recovery and significantly reduces inflammation. Studies reassure us that aloe vera is safe to use on corneal cells.
- Crack open 1-2 leaves from an aloe plant and scrape out the gel.
- Boil 1 cup of water, allow it to cool and add the gel.
- Mix until it becomes a light shade of green.
- Apply 2-3 drops of the solution into your eye with conjunctivitis.
- Use as a natural eyewash for a different method.
- Apply the remedy 3-4 times daily, regardless of the method.
* Do not use aloe vera for treating pink eye in children, toddlers or infants.
16. Boric Acid
Hydrogen borate, commonly known as boric acid, is a mild antiseptic used for treating various infections. It has gentle antifungal and antibacterial actions that treat pink eye infection without causing irritation. However, make sure it is diluted in boiled water beforehand.
- Bring 1 cup of water to a boil and add 1 teaspoon of boric acid.
- Boil for 3-4 minutes and then allow to cool.
- Soak a cotton pad or a clean towel in the mixture and gently apply to the affected eye.
- Wash the area with warm water.
- Do this 2-3 times a day for pink eye treatment at home.
Turmeric is an outstanding source of curcumin, an anti-inflammatory active compound. Its extra antibacterial and antiviral benefits also recommend it as one of the trusted home remedies for pink eye. You should also keep a stash of turmeric in your kitchen for treating other common ailments, such as coughs.
- Boil 1 cup of water.
- Add 2 tablespoons of turmeric.
- Allow to cool.
- Apply with the help of a cotton ball or clean towel on the infected eye.
18. Neem Oil
Neem oil is exceptional at fighting infections. From conjunctivitis to earache, neem oil reduces inflammation and fights bacteria with the help of active ingredients nimbin, azadirachtin or sialin. Similarly, its anti-inflammatory effects have also been closely studied, so it’s worth trying out.
- Pour 2-3 drops of neem oil on a cotton ball or swab.
- Apply with care around the affected eye prior to sleeping.
- Repeat on a nightly basis for 3-4 days.
Commonly known as mountain grape, barberry contains a strong alkaloid that provides its age-old healing properties. The substance in discussion, berberine, eliminates bacteria and treats infections. It is certainly not one of the most well-known home remedies for pink eye, but it can be used safely for additional treatment.
- Boil 1 cup of water.
- Add 1 teaspoon of barberry powder.
- Mix thoroughly and wait to chill.
- Rinse the affected eye with the solution.
- Repeat every day for 3 days to start seeing the results you desire.
20. Fish Oil Capsules
Fermented cod liver oil capsules aren’t topical home remedies for pink eye, like the rest on our list. Nevertheless, this oral solution is packed with nutrients that help your body fight the infection. Aside from its wonderful omega-3 fatty acid content, fish oil is also full of vitamins A, B2 and D.
- Take 1 capsule of cod liver oil before going to sleep.
- Make sure you follow the dosage instructions on the bottle.
- Ask your doctor for more information about cod liver oil in relation to your case of conjunctivitis.
All in all, these home remedies for pink eye show that you aren’t restricted to one form of treatment for this condition. Still, we strongly recommend that you see a medical professional if the symptoms persist after 3-4 days. During this time, please make sure to stay as isolated as possible so you don’t spread the infection to others. Persistence is essential, so make sure you repeat the abovementioned remedies as described.
Did these remedies have a positive impact on your condition? Which ones would you recommend to friends and family? Let’s get the conversation going below!
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