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Types and Uses of Eye Drops

Dry eyes

Eyes drops sometimes do not have medications in them and are only lubricating and tear-replacing solutions. There is a wide variety of artificial tear eye drops that provide different surface healing strategies. One can find bicarbonate ions, hypotonicity, high viscosity gels and ointments, and non-preserved types. They all act differently and therefore, one may have to try different artificial tears to find the one that works the best.

Steroid and antibiotic eye drops

Steroid and antibiotic eye drops are used to treat eye infections. They also have prophylactic properties and are used to prevent infections after eye surgeries. They should be used for the entire time prescribed without interruptions. The infection may relapse if the use of the medication is stopped.

Pink eye

Antibiotic eye drops are prescribed when infection conjunctivitis is caused by bacteria but not when it is caused by a virus. In the case of allergic conjunctivitis, artificial tears can help dilute irritating allergens present in the tear film.

Some eye drops may contain histamine antagonists or no steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAIDs), which suppress the optical mast cell responses to allergens including (but not limited to) aerosolized dust particles.

Eye drops used in managing glaucoma help the eye's fluid to drain better and decrease the amount of fluid made by the eye which decreases eye pressure. They are classified by their active ingredient and they include: prostaglandin analogs, beta blockers, alpha agonists, and carbonic anhydrase inhibitors. There are also combination drugs available for those patients who require more than one type of medication.

Mydriatic eye drops
These make the eye's pupil widen to maximum, to let an optometrist have the best view inside the eyeball behind the iris. Afterwards in sunny weather they can cause dazzling and photophobia until the effect of the mydriatic has worn off.

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