Tears are necessary to keep your eyes healthy. They rinse the eye of any dust or particles and keep the eyes moist and comfortable. Certain enzymes found in tears eliminate microorganisms that can be found in the eye.
When the eyes lack sufficient tears, the results are often discomfort such as constant feelings of dryness, burning, scratchiness or the feeling of a foreign body in your eye. Ironically, sometimes dry eyes can cause watery eyes in an attempt to compensate for dryness.
Dry eye syndrome can be a result of a several reasons. Dry eyes are often age related since it is usually adults that complain of dry eye syndrome, and often women during menopause. Reduction in tear production can also result from certain medicines such as antihistamines, antidepressants, birth control pills as well as others. Dry or dusty air, and excessive heating or air conditioning are also known causes. Additionally, certain systemic diseases or deficiencies in tear production, continual use of the computer which can reduce blinking, or use of contact lenses can add to the chances of dry eyes.
Dry eye symptoms can often be alleviated with lubricating eye drops to reduce dryness. It’s a good idea to consult with your eye doctor to make sure you are using the right eye drops in the right way. If over the counter drops aren’t working you may need prescription drops that actually help your eyes to make more tears. Some optometrists may suggest you try ways for you to modify your environment or your diet to reduce discomfort.
For the majority of individuals, dry eyes will not result in any permanent harm but can be a nuisance. However, severe cases could make you more at risk of infection so it is worthwhile to consult with your eye doctor.
Particularly in the cold season, it would help to make every effort to protect your eyes from dryness, biting winds and particles. Using sunglasses when going outdoors and trying out a humidifier inside to combat dry heat are ways to reduce exposure and dryness.
If you are feeling some of the symptoms listed above visit your eye doctor today!