Eye drops can help seniors manage the symptoms of seasonal allergies, dry eyes, and other eye problems. Some of the symptoms that can be relieved by using eye drops include redness, itchiness, and constant tearing. Eye drops can be used at any time of the day although it’s common for seniors to use them before they go to bed and when they wake up to eliminate redness and dryness. It’s important for seniors to use eye drops correctly so that they don’t get eye infections or create vision problems. Seniors with 24-hour home care can get help from a care provider to make sure they are using their eye drops correctly.
Wash Hands Before Handling Drops
The tip of the eye drop bottle can become contaminated by dirt, bacteria, or germs fairly easily. And seniors shouldn’t touch their eyes with their hands if they’re dirty. So seniors should make sure that they wash their hands thoroughly before handling any eye drops or using them. And if your senior parent does have 24-hour home care and their care provider is helping them use eye drops they should be washing their hands before helping.
Never Touch The Tip Of The Bottle To The Eye
One of the biggest mistakes that seniors make when using eye drops is touching the tip of the bottle to their eye. That can cause eye infections, redness, and the transfer of bacteria from the bottle to the eye. Seniors should never get the tip of the bottle near their actual eye. Instead, they should squeeze gently so that a drop falls from the applicator tip into their eye. If seniors do accidentally get the tip of the bottle near their eye that bottle should be tossed into the trash and they should get a new bottle of eye drops.
Cap The Bottle Immediately After Use
The cap of the bottle is essential for protecting the applicator tip and keeping it from getting dirt and bacteria on it. The cap should be replaced on the bottle immediately after the drops have been applied. If the cap is left off accidently it’s best to throw that bottle of eye drops away and get a fresh bottle. Seniors should never take risks when it comes to their eyes or their vision.
Don’t Overuse The Drops
Eye drops aren’t meant to be used long-term unless they are prescription drops that were given to your senior parent by a doctor. Over the counter eye drops can be effective for a short time. But many of them can cause rebound redness and other side effects if they are used long term. Seniors should only use the drops until their symptoms become manageable then they should stop using them. If they experience any side effects from the drops they should stop using them.