Red-Eye Syndrome: The Glassy-Eyed Look of Marijuana Use

From medicinal properties to recreational uses–this plant-based substance has been a part of human societies for centuries. You already know what we are talking about – marijuana, cannabis, pot, weed. Unfortunately, there are many side effects, one of the most evident being the ‘red-eye syndrome’ or the ‘glassy-eyed’ look. Many of our patients consider this transformation harmless. However, it grants insight into the impacts of marijuana addiction on our bodies. So, if you have noticed a sign of red-eye syndrome in your loved one, our analysis of this condition will help you define if the cause for it is their use of the cannabis plant.

It’s All in the Eyes. What Is Red-Eye Syndrome?

an eye with traces of substance abuse

Red eye syndrome, also known as red eye or sometimes conjunctivitis, is a condition characterised by the inflammation of the conjunctiva, which is the clear tissue that covers the white part of the eye and lines the inner surface of the eyelids. This inflammation can cause the blood vessels in the conjunctiva to become dilated and more visible, giving the eye a red or pink appearance. There are several potential causes of red-eye syndrome, including:

  1. Allergic conjunctivitis
  2. Bacterial or viral conjunctivitis
  3. Dry eyes
  4. Environmental Factors

The Effects of Red Eye on Your Vision

A guy is holding his glasses, seemingly in pain

While the red-eye syndrome might not be harmful, persistent red-eyes may indicate a need for you to reassess your marijuana usage. The bloodshot and glassy eyes are just a superficial representation of the possible impact on your vision. Prolonged use of marijuana can lead to adverse effects on visual health, including:

  • Visual perception alterations: In the short term, marijuana use can alter visual perception, causing some users to experience heightened sensitivity to colours and bright lights, as well as increased sensitivity to contrasts.
  • Intraocular pressure changes: Marijuana’s influence on intraocular pressure (IOP) plays a significant role in understanding its effect on vision. Consumption of marijuana tends to lower IOP, which can temporarily alleviate symptoms for glaucoma patients. Nevertheless, these effects are short-lived and can vary based on dosage and frequency of use.
  • Dry eyes and discomfort: One common side effect of marijuana use is dry and irritated eyes. This condition can lead to discomfort, persistent itching, and redness, exacerbating eye irritation and contributing to long-term ocular damage.

To sum up, red-eye syndrome is an outward manifestation of the physiological changes occurring within the eye due to marijuana consumption. Even if you hide the colour, the effects will still threaten your visual organs. As some of these changes may have negative repercussions on vision and eye health, it is helpful for you to monitor your marijuana use and consult medical professionals carefully when needed.

The Providence Projects can help you diagnose your cannabis use and assist in finding the best residential treatment programme for cannabis addiction out of our bespoke options. Reach out to our admissions team for more information.

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Prevention: Better Than Cure

Regarding marijuana consumption and eye health, being proactive and aware of the potential side effects is essential. Below are a few tips to alleviate symptoms and maintain healthy eyes:

  • Monitor consumption: If you experience persistent red, dry, or itchy eyes, consider evaluating your marijuana usage. Cutting back on your illegal drug use is a way to let your eyes heal, but you may also want to consider quitting as a whole.
  • Eye drops: Over-the-counter lubricating eye drops can relieve dryness and redness. These drops can restore moisture and minimise irritation associated with marijuana use.
  • Stay hydrated: Drinking ample amounts of water helps maintain overall health and can aid in minimising side effects like dry eyes.
  • Switch strains: Different strains of marijuana can have varying effects on the eyes. Trying an alternative strain might help reduce ocular discomfort.
  • Consult a doctor: If your symptoms persist or worsen, seeking professional medical advice is essential. A healthcare professional can recommend the appropriate action for managing your eye health.

The Provy—The Path to Understanding and Overcoming

At Providence Projects, we understand the challenges and struggles of dealing with marijuana dependence. We want you to know that you’re not alone in this journey, and we’re here to provide the guidance and support you need.

We recognise that overcoming dependence is a personal and often complex process. That’s why we offer a range of resources and therapies. Our team of dedicated professionals is ready to lend a compassionate ear and provide you with the tools necessary to navigate this journey. Contact us today, and let us help you on the path to understanding, growing, and overcoming marijuana dependence.