How do you always apply eye drops onto your eyes? Study says less than half of us are putting eye drops into eyes in a proper way. Let us learn a proper way of applying eye drops for both protecting your eyes and also for a maximized medical efficacy.
A Proper Way of Applying Eye Drops
１ Wash your hands well
The reason for washing hands at first is to prevent an invasion of various germs into an eye drop container in case a hand or finger touches the tip of it. Wash well with soap and running water.
２ After opening the cap of container, place it on the clean surface
In order to avoid bacterial infection, place the cap on the clean surface.
３ Place yourself in the position that makes it easier to apply eye drops
You need to intend to keep your face position upward. It is better to sit on the chair with backrest or lie on your back in bed.
４ Pull your lower eyelid down and ensure eyedrops to hit into the eye
Placing the hand that is applying eye drop onto the other hand, which is pulling the lower eyelid, makes it easier the eyedrops to hit into the eyes. At this time, please be careful the tip of container not to touch the eyelids, eyelashes, or eyes directly.
５．Wipe off spilled over eyedrops with clean gauze or facial tissue.
The delicate skin around eyes could develop a rash with spilled out eye drop liquid.
６．Close your eyes and softly hold the inner corners of the eyes for about 30 seconds.
This is to keep the solution inside of the eyes.
*Do not blink.
*If you had a surgical operation around eyes, no need to hold the inner corners of the eyes, just closing your eyes would work.
７．Close the cap tightly after use and keep it in a clean place.
Store in an area out of direct sunlight.
Wrong way of applying eye drops
１．If eye drop precisely putting into eyes?
If liquid overflowed around eyes, let’s not pour it into eyes.
There is a risk that dart, pollen, or bacteria would also come into eyes together.
→ If you aim to drop the liquid onto the bag of lower eyelids, it is more likely to come into eyes directly.
→ Wipe off spilled-over eyedrops with clean gauze or facial tissue.
２．If the tip of eyedrop container is contacting eyelids, eyelashes, or eyes?
Keep some distance between the container and eyes when applying.
There are risks of reverse-flow into the container along with dart or bacteria and the contamination of the rest of the eye drop in the container.
→ If you notice the contamination of foreign objects or cloudiness in the container, please stop using and use a brand-new one.
３．Are you blinking right after applying eye drop?
You may think blinking after applying eye drop would help it to spread through entire eye? However, it works oppositely and makes it run out from eyes towards your nose. If it runs out of the eyes, not only the medical efficacy gets weakened, eye drop component may enter through the nose and go through the throat to the whole body and could possibly cause some side effects.
→ Please do not blink after applying eye drops.
４．Are you dripping many drops at a time?
Even applying many drips at a time, often coming out of eyes and better effectiveness cannot be expected.
→ You can expect an adequate effect just with 1 drip a time.
１．Shake well before using ophthalmic suspension
Ophthalmic suspensions such as KARY UNI or FLUMETHOLON often precipitate the medical ingredients on the bottom of containers, so please shake well before using.
２．Leave some interval in timing when using 2 different kinds of eye drops.
When applying different kinds of eye drops right after the first one, it will make the first one run out from the eyes. It is more effective to leave at least 5 minutes before applying the second one.
３．Applying order: First ophthalmic solution, and then ophthalmic suspension
Examples of ophthalmic solution are HYALEIN, SANCOBA, or DIQUAS. As said above, ophthalmic suspensions are KARY UNI, FLUMETHOLON, and so on.
It is better to apply water-soluble solution first; ophthalmic suspension should be applied after.
*If you need to apply the same type of several eye drops, please apply the eye drop whose efficacy is more important for your symptoms first, and then the less important one later.
４．Do not apply while wearing soft contact lenses
You can apply medical eye drops onto the eyes while wearing hard contact lenses, but please take off soft contact lenses when applying and reload them more than 15 minutes after applied.
*One-Day type soft contact lens is exceptional.
*You can also apply eye drops if you are using the soft contact lenses which does not use the antiseptics such as HYALEIN MINI ophthalmic solution and ALESION ophthalmic solution which do not include the antiseptic Benzalkonium chloride.
５．Use up opened-bottle within one month
The expiration date written on the container is effective while the bottle kept unopened. If you open the package, use up within a month. If one month has passed and there is some left over after a month, please dispose of it.
*If you see any foreign object or cloudiness in the container, please dispose of it even if one month hasn’t passed yet.
Notes for storing eye drops
・Store in a cool place and keep away from direct sunlight
*There are eye drops that you need to keep in the fridge such as Xalatan eye drops, or TRAVATANZ ophthalmic solution. There are, on the other hand, kinds that need to be stored in room temperature as well, such as RIZABEN eye drops.
・Keep away from the reach of children
To prevent an accidental ingestion in children, keep away from toddlers.
・Do not place eye drops near insect repellents and poultices
There will be a risk of mingling of volatile component and eye drop component. Please keep away from insect repellents and poultices.
We’ve explained the detailed tips on how to use and store eye drops in this article. There must be a lot of things you might have not known before.
The contents explained in this article are just general uses of eye drops. There are, however, the eye drops which require special procedures as well. Please follow the instructions provided by your doctor or pharmacy when prescribed.