How to Get Rid of Red Eyes

by Shanti
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It’s been a little more than one year since mask-wearing became the norm. Expressions of joy, pleasure, or gratitude have become the work of the eyes as long as the mask is on. Open and clear eyes help with expression. But as pot smokers know those red, puffy, glazed eyes do little for you when wearing a mask. Stoned eyes only tell the story about the last joint you smoked, and not much else. Marijuana consumption isn’t coming to an end, especially during coronavirus.  But this article will help you cover up or fix red, puffy, glazed peepers

Why marijuana causes red puffy glassy eyes

 The eyes say it all when it comes to marijuana use. Checking someone’s eyes is one of the simplest ways for people to detect recent marijuana use. Unfortunately, for those wanting to keep their Mary Jane use a secret red, puffy, glassy eyes are a give away. So, what causes red eyes?

The Endocannabinoid System and Vision

Eyes turn red and puffy due to cannabinoids in marijuana such as THC. When cannabinoids enter the body they bind to cannabinoid receptors. These receptors make up the human endocannabinoid system.

The human eye contains numerous cannabinoid receptors. There is a wide distribution of CB1 cannabinoid receptors in the retina and the anterior eye. Scientists are near certain cannabinoids influence eye function. Receptors located in the eyes serve as proof of this influence. Without the endocannabinoid system maximum vision is lost. Type 1 cannabinoid receptors (CB1 receptors) are “expressed in many structures involved in the processing of visual information”, such as the retina, superior colliculus, lateral geniculate nucleus, and most importantly, the primary visual cortex.  When cannabinoids such as THC bind to the CB1 receptors  changes in the eyes occur. 

THC’s Influence on the Eyes

Changes occurring in the eyes after marijuana consumption are both functional and physical. A night vision study concluded, “night-vision is increased upon cannabis consumption.” Higher sensitivity caused by cannabis consumption is likely the reason for increased night-vision. Further research is needed to uncover more functional changes caused by cannabis.

Red lines in eyes are the physical changes caused by cannabinoids cause in the eyes.  Experts agree, THC lowers blood pressure and increases blood flow in the human body. 

In addition blood vessels in the eyes expand after THC consumption. It’s a process called dilation. Dilation causes red bloodshot eyes.

Glassy Eyes and Intoxication

The endocannabinoid system is a part of the central nervous system (CNS).  When we consume marijuana THC and other cannabinoids bind to the receptors in the CNS. Binding to CNS recptors causes the automatic mechanisms, like blinking, to delay or stop.

Blinking helps us keep our eyes moist.  When blinking stops or slows the eyes get very dry.  This dryness causes the eyes to look glassy.

When glassy eyes and redness combines our eyes tell others we’ve just had a few puffs of our favorite medicine.

Remedies for Red, Puffy, Glassy Eyes

Sometimes red puffy eyes are a welcomed thing.  But there are times when eyes need to be clear. The following remedies may help to make your eyes white again:

  • Caffeine – Caffeine raises blood pressure and restricts blood vessels including the blood vessels in the eyes.  In addition, caffeine increases tear production to get rid of glassy peeps.  Caffeine can be consumed in a beverage like coffee or tea or it may be applied directly to the eye with tea bags.
  • Green Tea – High flavonoid content and caffeine can both help to reduce redness and puffiness in the eye area.  Cold soaked tea bags applied to the area are easy and portable.
  • Chamomile and Rooibos – Can be effective in treating and refreshing sore or red eyes. The anti-inflammatory properties of these teas may help to reduce any swelling or inflammation that accompanies irritated eyes.
  • Cold compress – Cold temperatures constrict blood vessels in the membrane covering the eye, reducing redness and general eye area puffiness.
  • Hydrate – Dehydration causes dryness of the eyes since the body redirects water for more important functions like brain circulation.  Staying hydrated is a preventative measure.
  • Tear replacement drops – Speak with your pharmacists for more information on what kind is best for you.
  • Sunglasses – A quick cover
  • Lower THC content – This is an awful idea.

These remedies work depending on several factors.  How much you smoked is going to be a factor as well.

One day red puffy glazed eyes will have a solution.  Some brilliant geneticist may make a type of weed that never gets your eyes red or glassy.  But would you get it? Having glassy red eyes letting the world know your secret may not be so bad after all.

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