Ayurvedic Self-Care: Washing the Eyes

 You wash your body. How about your eyes?

Has it ever occurred to you that it is an important part of self-care to wash your eyes regularly? Eye washing is an important part of Ayurvedic self-care. Ayurveda is largely based on creating healthy routines that allow for optimal health. By keeping the eyes properly cleaned and nourished, eyesight can be optimized, dry eyes soothed, eye problems averted and/or reversed. For most people, it’s best to wash the eyes once or twice per week unless there is a health issue to be addressed. 

 

To wash the eyes, fill an eye cup ½ full with high quality, organic, additive-free rose water (also called rose hydrosol), then fill the rest of the way with warm (not hot), pure water. Bend forward and press the cup into your eye socket, with your eye closed. Then lift your head/eye cup upward as you tilt your head back, allowing the diluted rose water to fill the eye cavity of your closed eye. Then open your eye and soak your eye in the rose water for a few moments, blinking a few times. Be sure that you’re not wearing eye makeup when you do this. 

 

As an alternative, use triphala eye wash. Triphala is an herbal blend of haritaki, bibhitaki and amalaki. To make triphala eye wash: add ½ tsp of triphala powder to a glass or ceramic cup and add 8 ounces boiled, filtered water. Stir the triphala and hot water mixture well, remove the spoon and leave it to cool. It’s suggested to make this in the evening and leave it overnight for morning use. Alternatively, make it in the morning and leave it all day for evening use. An hour is usually long enough for all of the sediment to be well settled and the solution saturated with triphala’s beneficial nutrients. Strain with cheesecloth and use as described above.

 

Your eyes will sparkle and shine in gratitude!

 

Check with your eye doctor before washing the eyes if you have any eye conditions. Eye washes are not recommended when there is any kind of injury to the eye or the area around it. Eye cups are commonly available at drug stores and online.

 

By Marisa Laursen, C.A.S., P.K.S., A.Y.T., Faculty at the California College of Ayurveda