Do you ever get an uncomfortable, itchy feeling in your eyes at the end of a long day? If this happens regularly, then you may be suffering from dry eyes.
Eye dryness occurs when the eye doesn’t produce tears properly or when the tears evaporate too quickly. It can range in severity and is caused by many different things, from lifestyle to medical conditions. For some, it’s an annoying but uncommon occurrence, but for others dry eyes can be a difficult, ongoing issue.
If your eyes often feel dehydrated, here are a few easy ways you can combat dryness for healthy eyes.
Swap Contact Lenses for Glasses
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Contact lens wearers are prone to dry eyes and may experience relief by wearing glasses instead. This is because lenses prevent oxygen from getting to the eye, leaving a dry, gritty feeling known as contact lens-induced dry eye (CLIDE). If ditching the lenses fills you with dread, don’t worry – prescription glasses have never been more popular or stylish than they are right now. With so many amazing designs available, you probably won’t even miss your contacts.
Always Carry Eye Drops
Lubricating, over-the-counter eye drops are vital for dry eye sufferers. You never know when symptoms will flare up and you’ll get that uncomfortable, desert-like feeling under your lids, so always keep eye drops close by if you suffer from dry eyes. Artificial tears offer instant relief by replacing some of the moisture that is missing and making your dry eyes feel much better.
Use a Warm Compress
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A large proportion of dry eye problems are caused by inadequate oil, or meibum, secretion. This substance is secreted from meibomian glands located along the margin of the eyelids and stops the tear film on your eye from evaporating. If the glands get clogged, the oil can’t do its job.
While doctors can perform a procedure known as Meibomian Gland Expression to get rid of blockages, an easier and less painful way to reduce symptoms is by placing a warm compress on your eyes. This will help to soften the hardened meibum and will feel great on sore, dry eyes.
Always Remove Eye Makeup
Speaking of meibum gland blockages, one of the biggest causes of this condition is excess makeup which can get clogged in the openings. Putting makeup close to the eye can also make dry eyes feel much more gritty and irritated. If you suffer from dry eyes, try to cut down on the amount of eyeliner and mascara you use and at the end of the day, make sure you remove all of your eye makeup thoroughly with a good cleanser.
Take Regular Computer Breaks
It’s a well-known fact that we blink less when staring at a computer screen. As a result, tear production is reduced which is crucial in lubricating your eyes. To stop your eyes from drying out so much, make sure to take frequent breaks away from your computer or TV. Opticians recommend that you should look away from a screen every 20 minutes and focus on something that is at least 20 feet away for at least 20 seconds. This will help to relieve dry eyes as well as eye strain.
Invest in Quality Sunglasses
When you’re outdoors, factors such as UV rays, wind, dust and other irritants can worsen your dry eye symptoms while the sun can accelerate tear evaporation. One of the best ways to prevent this is with a pair of high quality sunglasses. Make sure that they block 100% of the sun’s UV rays and look for a style that wraps around the face to fully protect the eyes.
Seek Professional Help
If you’re suffering from seriously dry eyes and nothing seems to help, it could be a good idea to talk to a doctor or an optician. Dry eyes can be caused by eyelid conditions such as blepharitis and other underlying health conditions or can be a symptom of certain medications. A professional can offer advice, diagnose any medical issues and provide proper treatment such as ointments and eyelid cleansing.
Remember, your eye health is extremely important and shouldn’t be overlooked. Dry eyes could be an indication of a medical condition or a sign that you’re not treating your eyes properly. To look after your sight, watch out for dry eye symptoms and take action to deal with the problem.