Rubbing your eyes is a natural reaction. You may do it when you wake up, on a windy day when your eyes are dry, or when your eyes feel irritated. While it can seem beneficial, you may actually be doing harm. Here are several reasons to avoid rubbing your eyes, as well as why you should schedule an eye exam if eye irritation is a consistent problem.

Why You Shouldn’t Rub Your Eyes

1. You Introduce Bacteria


Your hands collect countless bacteria throughout the day. When you rub your eyes, you introduce all of these bacteria into them. There, they can cause additional eye irritation and even serious infections. Pink Eye is a common example of inflammation and bacterial infection. If you’re suffering from dry eyes, ask your eye doctor about approved eyedrops at your next eye exam. These lubricate dry eyes, and you won’t be tempted to rub.

2. You Could Injure Your Eye

You may press sharp debris that’s collected on your fingers into your eye, resulting in a corneal tear or abrasion. It’s also possible to press your eyelashes into the eye, causing them to poke sensitive surfaces. If dry eyes are a reoccurring problem, you may be suffering from dry eye disease. Speak with your doctor at your next eye exam about solutions like prescription eyedrops.

3. You Can Develop New Eye Problems

Chronic rubbing can lead to an eye health issue called keratoconus. The pressure from your fingers can gradually reshape the cornea—the clear part of the front of your eye. As this happens, it affects how light enters the eye and could lead to distorted vision. You may end up needing eyeglasses or contact lenses to correct the vision problems you developed.


If you regularly deal with itchy eyes or eye care issues, the staff at Russellville Eye Clinic PA will help. This Russellville, AR, practice handles every aspect of eye care, including laser eye surgery, glaucoma screening, and general care. Explore all of their ophthalmology services on their website or call (479) 968-7302 today to schedule an eye exam.