Dry eyes (also called ‘dry eye syndrome’ and ‘keratoconjunctivitis sicca’) is a condition in which your eyes don’t make enough tears to keep your eyes moist, or the makeup of your tears is altered.
- eyes feeling dry, gritty, and sore;
- eye redness;
- watery eyes;
- eye fatigue;
- blurry vision;
- sensitivity to light.
If your symptoms are persistent, you should talk to your doctor, especially if your eyes hurt a lot and your vision is getting worse.
Dry eyes can be caused by many things, including:
- dry air (e.g. being in a windy or hot climate);
- not blinking often enough, such as when you work on your computer for too long without a break;
- thyroid problems – Grave’s disease (overactive thyroid) and Hashimoto’s disease (underactive thyroid);
- tear gland damage;
- eye surgery (in this case, symptoms are usually temporary and resolve themselves on their own);
- certain medications, e.g. antihistamines, antidepressants, beta-blockers, diuretics, decongestants, and high blood pressure medicines;
- certain conditions, including rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, lupus, scleroderma, Sjogren’s syndrome, and blepharitis (inflammation of the eyelids).
Treatment depends on the underlying cause and can involve different medications and procedures, such as the following:
- eye drops (artificial tears);
- eye ointments;
- anti-inflammatory medications;
- tear-stimulating drugs;
- wearing special contact lenses;
- tear plugs;
- procedures to unblock oil glands;
- light therapy and eyelid massage.
Discuss treatment options with your doctor — he or she will recommend the treatment (or a combination of treatments) that is right for you.
You can take additional steps to avoid dry eyes or to relieve the discomfort of dry eyes:
- keep your eyes and eyelids clean;
- wear proper eye protection in dry, windy, dusty, and smoky environments;
- quit smoking and avoid smoke;
- take breaks for your eyes to relax when you’re doing a task that requires prolonged eye concentration;
- include omega-3 and omega-7 fats into your diet;
- use a humidifier if the air in your home is too dry.
This post is solely for informational purposes. It is not intended to provide medical advice. Fabiosa doesn’t take responsibility for any possible consequences from any treatment, procedure, exercise, dietary modification, action or application of medication which results from reading or following the information contained in this post. Before undertaking any course of treatment, the reader should consult with their physician or other health care provider.
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