Do you feel like your eyes are always dry? Are they dry and irritated year-round when most people only have dry eyes during allergy season?
You may have dry eye syndrome. Dry eye syndrome is a condition that affects millions of people every year, many of whom don’t know they have it.
Having dry eyes seems normal, not a diagnosable eye condition. But it is, and it’s treatable with proper diagnosis and eye care.
Keep reading to learn about three signs that your dry eyes need treatment.
When you use a screen like your cell phone, computer, the tv, you automatically blink less. This situation is unavoidable nowadays.
Even if you don’t work on a computer, chances are you spend a reasonable amount of time looking at screens.
The world is running on cell phones and computers more than ever, and who doesn’t like to watch tv? All these activities can dry your eyes out because they cause you to blink less.
When you blink, your eyelids spread tears across your eyes to keep them healthy and hydrated. Tears give your eyes the nutrients they need to be healthy and functional.
If you aren’t blinking enough, your eyes aren’t getting what they need. Chronic dry eyes are the result.
One of the simplest ways to correct this is to take time to blink throughout the day. Every hour take a minute to blink and hold your eyes closed for longer than usual.
Extra blinking should give your eyes what they need. If not, you may need to consult your eye doctor to see what other treatments can help your eyes stay hydrated.
One of the more common symptoms of dry eye syndrome is chronic tearing or watering in your eyes. It may seem backward but, despite the abundance of tears flowing into your eyes and out of them, you have dry eyes.
This situation has to do with the composition of your tears. Healthy tears have three ingredients, water, mucus, and oil.
The water hydrates your eyes, keeping them comfortable and moist. The mucus handles spreading tears evenly across your eyes to ensure every part gets hydrated.
The oil in your tears keeps the water and mucus from evaporating. If you have excessive tearing but chronic dry eyes, you likely lack oil in your tears.
If you don’t have enough oil in your tears, they evaporate before they can hydrate your eyes. This tells your eyes to make more tears because they sense the dryness.
There are ways to get more oil on your eyes. Extra blinking may help as it stimulates the oil-producing glands in your eyelids.
If blinking doesn’t do enough, holding a warm compress to your eyelids for a few minutes every day may work. If you need a more permanent solution, your eye doctor can explore potential options with you.
Allergies are the most common cause of dry, irritated eyes. They cause redness, itchiness, and dryness, usually in the spring and fall.
But if your eyes remain dry year-round and regular eye drops don’t relieve the symptoms, you likely have dry eye syndrome.
It’s natural for your eyes to be a bit irritated during certain times of the year. But if your normal situation is dry, irritated eyes, you should seek help from your eye doctor.
There are various treatments for dry eyes. They include eye drops, surgery, and devices to stimulate tear production and prevent tear drainage. Your eye doctor can help you find a way to get rid of your chronic dry eye once and for all.
Schedule an appointment at Mid Ohio Eye in Columbus, OH, to see how you can keep your eyes comfortable and hydrated year-round.