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Paraffin-based eye ointments for dry eyes

Lacri-Lube, Hylo Night, Xailin Night

The eye ointment is best applied at night to relieve eye dryness and irritation.

Your vision may become blurred for a short while after using the ointment. This will soon clear.

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About paraffin-based eye ointments

Type of medicine

Eye lubricant

Used for

Dry eyes

Also called

Lacri-Lube®; Hylo® Night; Xailin® Night; Simple Eye Ointment

Available as

Eye ointment

Eye ointments containing paraffins are used to relieve eye dryness and irritation. They moisten, soothe and lubricate the surface of your eye, making it feel more comfortable. They can contain white or yellow soft paraffin, liquid paraffin and wool fats.

You may be prescribed the eye ointment by a doctor. Alternatively, you can buy the eye ointments without a prescription form a pharmacy, and some brands are also available to buy from other retail outlets.

Before using paraffin-based eye ointments

To make sure that this is the right treatment for you, you should speak with a doctor or pharmacist before using the eye ointment:

  • If you normally wear contact lenses.

  • If you have ever had an allergic reaction to lanolin or to any other preparation you have used in your eye.

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How to use an eye ointment

  1. Wash your hands before you use the ointment.

  2. Remove the cap from the tube.

  3. Pull the lower lid of your eye downwards to form a pocket.

  4. Hold the tube upside down near to your eye.

  5. Squeeze the tube to release a thin line of ointment along the inside of your lower eyelid. Try not to touch your eye with the end of the tube as you do this.

  6. Close your eye for about 30 seconds and then blink a few times to spread the ointment around the inside of your eye.

  7. Repeat the process in your other eye if you have been told to use it in both eyes.

  8. When you have finished, remember to replace the cap on the tube to prevent the ointment from becoming contaminated.

Getting the most from your treatment

  • Before you start using the eye ointment, read the manufacturer's printed information leaflet supplied with the pack. It will give you more information about using the ointment and will provide a full list of any side-effects which you may experience.

  • Apply the ointment as directed on the pack. Eye ointments containing paraffins are best used at bedtime. You can also use them during the day as often as you need, but other eye preparations such as eye drops are often more convenient for day use.

  • Please take care that the tip of the tube doesn't touch your eye, your fingers, or any other surface. This could contaminate the eye ointment.

  • When first put in, eye ointments can cause blurred vision. This should quickly clear. Make sure you can see clearly again before you drive, or before you use tools or machines.

  • Do not use the eye ointment while you are wearing contact lenses. You must leave at least 30 minutes after using the eye ointment before you put contact lenses in.

  • If your symptoms do not improve within a few days, please make an appointment to see a doctor for further advice.

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Can paraffin-based eye ointments cause problems?

This eye preparation is unlikely to cause unwanted symptoms, although rarely some people have an allergic-type reaction to the ingredients. If this happens, your eye may become red or swollen. If so, stop using the ointment and contact your doctor.

If you experience any other symptoms which you think may be due to using the eye ointment, discuss them with your doctor or pharmacist.

How to store eye ointments

  • Keep all medicines out of the reach and sight of children.

  • Most eye ointments only keep for four weeks once opened. If you are using VitA-POS®, it can be used for six months after opening. Do not store or use a tube for longer than the recommended time. This will help to prevent the risk of eye infections.

  • Store in a cool, dry place, away from direct heat and light.

Important information about all medicines

Important information about all medicines

If you are having an operation or dental treatment, tell the person carrying out the treatment which medicines you are using.

This medicine is for you. Never give it to other people even if their condition appears to be the same as yours.

If you suspect that someone might have swallowed some of this medicine, contact your local accident and emergency department for advice.

Do not keep out-of-date or unwanted medicines. Take them to your local pharmacy which will dispose of them for you.

If you have any questions about this medicine ask your pharmacist.

Report side effects to a medicine or vaccine

If you experience side effects, you can report them online through the Yellow Card website.

Further reading and references

Article history

The information on this page is written and peer reviewed by qualified clinicians.

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