Sometimes the white part of your eye turns red. Usually this happens because small blood vessels on the surface of your eye swell with extra blood. Sometimes it's because some of these small blood vessels break open and bleed.
Red eyes are usually caused by an infection or allergy
You may have other eye symptoms along with redness, such as watery or itchy eyes, eye pain Eye Pain Eye pain can be severe, aching, or throbbing. You might feel like your eye has something in it. Along with pain, you may have eye redness or other symptoms, such as blurry vision or a bulging... read more , a feeling like something's in your eye, or sensitivity to light
Sometimes, you may also have symptoms in other parts of your body, such as a runny nose, cough, feeling sick to your stomach, or throwing up
The most common causes are:
Many painful eye problems also make your eye red. These problems include:
However, with these problems, you're most likely to want to see the doctor because of your eye pain.
See a doctor right away if you have red eyes and any of these warning signs:
If your eyes are red but you don't have any of these warning signs, you can wait a couple of days to see a doctor. You can usually see a regular doctor instead of an eye doctor.
Doctors will ask about your symptoms and medical history. They’ll examine you and check your head and neck for signs of an infection or allergy. Doctors may:
Check your vision with an eye chart
Put some liquid drops in your eye (you may have a burning feeling that lasts a few seconds)
Look into your eye using a special magnifying light (the light is very bright)
Measure the pressure in your eye (there are different ways to do this, but none of them hurt)
If doctors think there's something in your eye, they may briefly turn your eyelids inside out to look more closely in your eye. This may feel a little strange or uncomfortable, but it doesn't hurt. You may have blood tests or x-rays if doctors think you may have an infection behind your eyeball.