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Play it safe with colors on Holi

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This year, Holi, the festival of colors and vibrancy, one of the most globally recognized joyful mass festival in India, falls on March 25. A bountiful of spring, a myriad of colors and uninhabited display of collective celebration is what characterizes this important religious festival, which has actually become one of the eagerly anticipated national festivals especially by the millions of children and young adults across the country.

However, much as we love celebrating Holi, one need to be very cautious while playing with the colors. On the day of Holi and subsequent days, hospitals are flooded with a lot of patients with various eye problems.

According to doctors, the main reason for a visiting the hospitals/clinics, is accidental colors in the eyes. The dry colors sometimes has rough particles, which causes corneal abrasion (scratches). That can turn into ulcers, if infected. “This may at times even threaten vision. The color can also cause infection and allergic reaction in the eyes, which presents as severe irritation, pain and redness,” says Dr Seema Bahugna, a senior Ophthalmologist at LKS Hospital in the national Capital, New Delhi.

Eyes can be subjected to blunt trauma with water balloons. The high velocity with which the balloons hit the eyes can cause lens damage, bleeding in the eye and even retinal trauma. Should such an injury occur, a thorough examination by a specialist is required.

Other than eyes, some bad quality color can cause skin rashes and allergies. This is to be treated by cleaning the area and taking anti-allergic medications.

Here are some important don’ts and do’s:


  • Avoid color in eyes. If required wear light protective goggles. Vigorous rubbing of eyes should be avoided if color goes into the eye
  • Do not take over the counter medicine
  • Do not try home remedies


  • Washing eyes thoroughly with clean tap water without rubbing
  • Can do cold compresses, if swelling around eyes, and use lubricant eye drops
  • Visit an eye special immediately and take proper treatment

Enjoy Holi but do be careful with your eyes.  Have a Happy & Safe Holi!

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