Substance Use

How to Get Rid of Stoned Eyes

woman with stoned eyes high on cannabis

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How to Get Rid of Stoned Eyes From Cannabis Use

Red eyes are one of the telltale signs of cannabis use. Whether you’ve been smoking cannabis or ingesting THC through edibles or another form, you might experience eye redness. While not inherently dangerous, the effects of cannabis on your eyes can feel uncomfortable and make you feel self-conscious. If you’re worried about having stoned eyes, here’s some information on what causes them and how to avoid them.

Are you or someone you love struggling with addiction? Zinnia Health can give you the information you need about treatment. Make a no-obligation call to our 24/7 helpline at (855) 430-9439 for answers to your questions. 

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Why Does Cannabis Cause Red Eyes?

While some people may think smoking weed causes redness because the smoke irritates the eye, red eyes are actually a side effect of THC in all forms — including edibles. After you ingest cannabis, you’ll likely notice thin red lines across the whites of your eyes. These lines are always there, but they become more noticeable after cannabis consumption.

Cannabis causes red eyes because it dilates the blood vessels and capillaries (tiny blood vessels) that run through your eyes, making them more noticeable. The reason cannabis dilates these vessels is simply that the THC in cannabis lowers your blood pressure. In other words, it dilates the vessels throughout your body, making it easier for larger amounts of blood to rush through.

Red eyes caused by cannabis aren’t necessarily a health concern, but they can be uncomfortable.

How to Avoid Red Eyes from Cannabis

Cannabis consists of over 100 cannabinoids with the two most prominent compounds being THC and CBD. If you want to continue taking cannabis, but you don’t want to deal with bloodshot eyes, you can try to minimize the effect by choosing a strain of cannabis with less THC. Since THC is the primary cause of bloodshot eyes, choosing a different cannabis strain might be enough to prevent the redness.

Generally, a low-THC strain will be higher in CBD. This means the cannabis strain has a more subdued psychoactive effect, but some people prefer this, as it makes for a more manageable and sociable high. If you’re taking cannabis for medical purposes, be sure to consult your doctor before switching strains.

Home Remedies for Bloodshot Eyes

If you consume cannabis and find yourself with bloodshot eyes, you might want to get rid of them quickly. Depending on the amount of THC you ingested, you can expect the redness to go away on its own in anywhere from one to four hours. The intensity of the redness varies from person to person. However, there are some home remedies that can help minimize the redness sooner.

1. Apply a Compress

Applying a cold compress over your eyes can help make the redness go away. This method works because the cold actually shrinks the blood vessels back to normal size, and it also tightens the skin, which can make puffiness less noticeable.

To make a cold compress, fill a bowl with cold water and ice. Take a clean washcloth or dishcloth and soak it in the water. Wring out the cloth and lay it over your eyelids for 5-10 minutes. Check your eyes and then soak the cloth with more cold water, repeating the process until the redness has lessened or disappeared.

2. Use Artificial Tears

Over-the-counter eye drops are a popular remedy for red eyes. The most common brand names include Rohto, Refresh, and Visine. All these eye drops contain a compound known as tetrahydrozoline, which constricts the blood vessels in the eye. In turn, the dilated vessels aren’t as visible.

If you use contacts, make sure the eye drops you use are safe to apply while wearing contacts. Eye drops tend to work within a few minutes, so it’s a fast solution. They can also relieve some other side effects you may be experiencing, such as dryness and itchiness.

3. Wear Tinted Contacts or Sunglasses

If you have tried home remedies and they don’t work for you, or if you need to run out the door right away and you don’t want to be seen with red eyes, you have one last option: Cover your eyes. Sunglasses can be a good solution, especially on a sunny day.

However, if you’re going to be inside of buildings or going out at night when sunglasses would just look strange, you can try getting a pair of colored or tinted contacts from your eye doctor.

Tinted contacts, also known as stage contacts, don’t correct your vision. Instead, they’re applied merely to change the appearance of your eyes. While most contacts only cover your iris, which is the round, colorful part of your eye, there are full-eye stage contacts that will also cover the whites of your eye to make redness disappear.

Of course, it’s important to remember that covering up the side effects of drug use isn’t a viable option in the long run. You’re also bound to experience other side effects that you can’t hide, like changes in your mood, behavior, and perception. So, even if you hide eye redness, be careful about what you do after using marijuana.

Overcoming addiction on your own can feel impossible. Zinnia Health can help. With personalized addiction treatment services provided by our caring staff, we can get you back to what matters. Call our helpline 24/7 at (855) 430-9439 to get started. 

Can Smoking Cannabis Impact Eye Health?

Cannabis was once considered a good way to help glaucoma patients with their condition and prevent loss of vision. Since pressure on the optic nerve causes glaucoma, many people thought cannabis could help the condition, since it lowers blood pressure.

However, multiple studies have disproved this notion. In fact, long-term cannabis use could damage your eyes.

While eye redness alone is not thought to be harmful, using cannabis routinely may negatively impact your visual acuity. Recent studies have shown that cannabis actually slows the functioning of retinal ganglion cells, which can impact how quickly your eyes perceive and process visual information.

Whether you’re taking medical cannabis or using it recreationally, it’s a good idea to check in with your eye doctor at least annually for a routine checkup to make sure your vision remains healthy. Additionally, if you find your cannabis use is getting out of hand, it might be time to ask for some help.

How Zinnia Health Can Help

At Zinnia Health, we believe every individual deserves confidential, judgment-free help when it comes to quitting drugs. That’s why our facilities provide:

  • Customized treatment programs
  • Multiple forms of counseling and support
  • Inpatient and outpatient recovery options
  • Ongoing help even after you leave our facility

If you’re ready to take the next step toward addiction recovery, Zinnia Health can help. Our recovery specialists are standing by to answer your questions and help you get on the path to a life free from addiction. Call our helpline any time, day or night, at (855) 430-9439 to get the information you need. 

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