Castor Oil has been a part of my daily home treatment for dry eye for several years. This article and Primal Diet – Modern Health Podcast explain exactly what to buy and how to use Castor Oil for dry eye. Don’t use drug store Castor Oil – study this article!
While organic Castor Oil brought some relief for my dry eye (and is a great moisturizer for my eye area), I needed more support for dry eyes with aging.
Having worked since 1985 as a Clinical Nutritionist in San Antonio, I prefer natural treatment options. Info on my Health Journey is here.
Natural Help for Dry Eye Symptoms
Here’s my plan for dry eye itching, burning and occasional blurry vision. The goal is to control Demodex Mites that might be present (not true for everyone so get a proper diagnosis!) and help eyelid Meibomian Glands release their fatty fluid to protect tears.
1). Clean the Eyelids
- Clean makeup with a natural non-irritating cleanser (or stop wearing eye makeup)
- On arising or twice daily: Squirt 2 sprays Heyedrate Lid and Lash Cleanser on a smooth cotton pad. Wipe eyelids and lashes to clean, soothe and hydrate. Or spray onto closed lids and let air dry.
- I prefer Heyedrate to Avenova. Avenova has a bit of bleach (Sodium Hypochlorite).
- I don’t use baby shampoo on my eyes as some sites suggest. I rarely use soap or other cleansers on my skin, just a microfiber facial cleansing cloth.
2). Add eyedrops of choice
- I use Similisan Homeopathic Eye Drops. They work better for ME than any OTC drop tried. I buy their Dry Eye drop and their Red, Itchy eye drop. Available everywhere. These are not LUBRICANTS as commercial dry eye drops are. They work in a different manner.
- Repeat as needed
- I alternate these two drops
- Refresh Optive Mega-3 drops are a third choice. They have a bit of Omega 3 fish oil in them. See below on the necessity of supplementing fish oils and other oils (internally) for dry eye.
3). Apply Organic Hexane-Free Castor Oil to entire eye area
- Wash your hands
- Put one drop “Nature Drop” brand Castor Oil on a fingertip. (Hexane-free, organic oil). Touch it to another fingertip. Gently massage into closed eyelids and around the eyes as a safe non-irritating moisturizer.
- Castor Oil will not absorb well under the inner corner of your eyes. Wipe that off later if you care about “greasy-looking” eyes.
- Don’t do this at bedtime. It can get on your pillow and your heat mask.
Help for Dry Eye in the Evening
4). Use a heated dry eye mask once or twice daily
- I like my Bruder Moist Heat Eye Compress. It fits my face well without heating up my forehead and cheeks.
- Heat in the microwave just before bed. Place a tissue over the eyes then lay the mask down once in bed.
- Other instructions say to use it after cleansing in the morning
Fish Oil for Dry Eye Syndrome
5). Quality Fish Oil and GLA oil are essential
Essential Fatty Acids deficiencies are one cause of Dry Eye Syndrome. Not all fish oil is the same! If you burp it, it’s probably the wrong one. Castor Oil, Fish Oil and Black Currant Seed oils can help unblock Meibomian Glands, as heated eye compress do as well.
- Suggested high DHA Fish Oils include: OrthOmega Select DHA (note my Online Store price vs. big wholesale retailers), or Rosita Cod Liver Oil gelcaps.
- GLA is Gamma Linoleic Acid, an essential fat difficult to get in our diets. This Black Currant Seed Oil is excellent. Take 2 daily with meals along with the fish oil to support dry eye tears. (Both fats are good for pain and inflammation as well).
6). Repeat 1 – 4 dry eye remedies as needed
- If you need drops more often, or a different brand, do what works best for your dry eye relief. We’re all different.
- If your eyes hurt one day, use the heated eye compress multiple times for several days.
- When dry eye pain and itchiness get better, don’t get lax and stop all dry eye support.
7). See your doctor for checkups
- Your doctor will check the amount of time your tears take to form and disappear. If you’re getting worse, take action. Talk to your doctor about other dry eye symptoms and treatments.
- Consider IRL – Intense Pulsed Light to help open Meiboniam Glands. Ask if the glands need to be manually expressed (light squeezing). Other treatment options are available if the steps here don’t work for you. NOTE: you’ll still need to follow much of this even with medical intervention.
8). Wind, Winter and Allergies
- Dry air can dry the eye. Humidifiers help.
- Wear glasses if windy. You can get wraparound non-prescription eye protectors affordably.
- Allergies make eyes itch. This product in my Clinic’s Online Store is extremely popular for allergy support. We sell it at the correct price – big online warehouses do NOT.
9). Using Castor Oil as direct eye drops
- This article and Podcast have good instructions on using the right kind of castor oil directly in the eye for relief. If needed, put a few drops Oil on a clean QTIP and roll it onto a pulled down eyelid.
- Or ask someone to put a drop directly in your eyes. Don’t touch the glass dropper! Your vision will be a little foggy for a bit.
- Web MD has this info on Castor Oil for dry eye treatment of Meibomian Gland Dysfunction.
- PubMed has this summary article on Castor Oil for Dry Eye.
These tips are what I use at this time. If your dry eye syndrome is more advanced, my list may be incomplete.
I prefer not to use OTC eyewipes as they have preservatives and chemicals I try to avoid. I have used them occasionally and they didn’t cause a reaction, but I prefer the Heydrate Hypochlorus Spray as long as it’s working for me.