Your Experienced Legal Team | Se Habla EspaƱol 
Red watery eye from alcohol

Red, Watery, Bloodshot Eyes: Beyond the Influence of Alcohol

It's a familiar scene in movies and on television: a motorist gets pulled over, the police officer notices red, watery eyes, and immediately assumes the driver is under the influence of alcohol. But are red, watery eyes truly a definitive sign of intoxication? The short answer is: not necessarily.

Causes of Red, Watery, Bloodshot Eyes

  1. Allergies: One of the most common causes of red, watery eyes is an allergic reaction. Pollen, pet dander, dust, and other allergens can irritate the eyes, leading to that bloodshot appearance.
  2. Dry Eyes: Ironically, eyes that produce too few tears can become red and irritated. Dry eyes can result from factors such as age, medications, or environmental conditions.
  3. Infection: Conjunctivitis or "pink eye" is an inflammation of the eye caused by infection or allergies. It can lead to redness, swelling, and discharge.
  4. Eye Strain: In today's digital age, many of us spend hours staring at computer screens, phones, and televisions. This can strain the eyes, causing redness and discomfort.
  5. Fatigue: Lack of sleep or exhaustion can also cause the blood vessels in the eyes to expand, leading to a bloodshot appearance.
  6. Contact Lenses: Improperly cleaned or overused contact lenses can irritate the eyes, leading to redness.
  7. Environmental Factors: Smoke, dust, wind, and dry climates can all cause or exacerbate red, watery eyes.
  8. Other Medical Conditions: Some conditions, such as glaucoma, uveitis, and blepharitis, can cause symptoms of red, irritated eyes.

The Rush to Conclusions

Police officers are trained to detect signs of impairment in drivers. However, this training often oversimplifies the process of identifying intoxication. Red, watery eyes are among the indicators that officers look for, but as demonstrated above, there are numerous reasons why a person might exhibit this symptom that have nothing to do with alcohol consumption.

Moreover, stress, anxiety, or the sheer nervousness of being pulled over can exacerbate the appearance of red eyes. If a police officer hastily attributes this sign to alcohol consumption without considering other potential causes, it could lead to an unwarranted arrest for driving while intoxicated (DWI).

Zendeh Del & Associates, PLLC: Your Defense Against DWI in Galveston County

While the consequences of a DWI conviction can be severe, ranging from loss of driving privileges and steep fines to incarceration, having red, watery eyes should not automatically seal one's fate in court. This is where the legal expertise of Zendeh Del & Associates, PLLC comes into play.

Experience Matters: The team at Zendeh Del & Associates, PLLC has years of experience representing clients in DWI cases in Galveston County. They understand the nuances of the law and the intricacies of DWI defense.

Comprehensive Defense Strategy: Simply identifying that a driver had red, watery eyes is not sufficient proof of intoxication. Our team will scrutinize every detail of the traffic stop, including the reason for the stop, the officer's observations, any field sobriety tests conducted, and the handling of blood or breath samples.

Challenging Evidence: The attorneys at Zendeh Del & Associates, PLLC are adept at challenging the evidence presented by the prosecution. Were the sobriety tests administered correctly? Was the breathalyzer machine calibrated and functioning properly? These are just a few of the questions our team will raise to build a strong defense.

Client-First Approach: We believe in putting our clients first. We understand the stress and anxiety that come with a DWI charge. Our goal is to provide not only top-tier legal representation but also support and guidance throughout the legal process.


While red, watery, bloodshot eyes can be associated with alcohol consumption, they can also be caused by a wide range of other factors. It's essential to ensure that one's rights are protected and that assumptions are not mistaken for facts. If you or a loved one faces DWI charges in Galveston County, trust in the expertise of Zendeh Del & Associates, PLLC to mount a robust defense on your behalf.