Dry eyes may be a common condition that happens when your tears aren't ready to provide adequate lubrication for your eyes. Tears can be inadequate for many reasons. For example, dry eyes may occur if you do not produce enough tears or if you produce poor-quality tears.
Dry eyes feel uncomfortable. If you've got dry eyes, your eyes may sting or burn. You may experience dry eyes in certain situations, like on an airplane, in an air-conditioned room, while riding a motorcycle or after watching a display screen for a few hours.
Treatments for dry eyes may cause you to easier. These treatments can include lifestyle changes and eyedrops. You'll likely get to take these measures indefinitely to regulate the symptoms of dry eyes.
Signs and symptoms, which usually affect both eyes, may include:
Ø A stinging, burning or scratchy sensation in your eyes
Ø Stringy mucus in or around your eyes
Ø Sensitivity to light
Ø Eye redness
Ø A sensation of having something in your eyes
Ø Difficulty wearing contact lenses
Ø Difficulty with nighttime driving
Ø Watery eyes, which is the body's response to the irritation of dry eyes
Ø Blurred vision or eye fatigue
Dry eyes are caused by a scarcity of adequate tears. Your tears are a posh mixture of water, fatty oils and mucus. This mixture helps make the surface of your eyes smooth and clear, and it helps protect your eyes from infection.
For some people, the explanation for dry eyes is decreased tear production. For others it's increased tear evaporation and an imbalance within the makeup of your tears.
Factors that make it more likely that you're going to experience dry eyes include:
Ø Being older than 50. Tear production tends to diminish as you grow old . Dry eyes are more common in people over 50.
Ø Being a woman. A lack of tears is more common in women, especially if they experience hormonal changes thanks to pregnancy, using contraception pills or menopause.
Ø Eating a diet that is low in vitamin A, which is found in liver, carrots and broccoli, or low in omega-3 fatty acids, which are found in fish, walnuts and vegetable oils
Ø Wearing contact lenses
If you experience dry eyes, concentrate to the situations that are presumably to cause your symptoms. Then find ways to avoid those situations so as to stop your dry eyes symptoms. For instance:
Ø Avoid air blowing in your eyes. Don't direct hair dryers, car heaters, air conditioners or fans toward your eyes.
Ø Add moisture to the air. In winter, a humidifier can add moisture to dry indoor air.
Ø Consider wearing wraparound sunglasses or other protective eyewear. Safety shields are often added to the tops and sides of eyeglasses to dam wind and dry air. Ask about shields where you buy your eyeglasses.
Ø Take eye breaks during long tasks. If you're reading or doing another task that needs visual concentration, take periodic eye breaks. Close your eyes for a few minutes. Or blink repeatedly for a couple of seconds to assist spread your tears evenly over your eyes.
Ø Be aware of your environment. The air at high altitudes, in desert areas and in airplanes are often extremely dry. When spending time in such an environment, it may be helpful to frequently close your eyes for a few minutes at a time to minimize evaporation of your tears.
Ø Position your computer screen below eye level. If your display screen is above eye level, you'll open your eyes wider to look at the screen. Position your display screen below eye level in order that you will not open your eyes as wide. This may help slow the evaporation of your tears between eye blinks.
Ø Stop smoking and avoid smoke. If you smoke, ask your doctor for help devising a quit-smoking strategy that's most likely to work for you. If you do not smoke, stand back from people that do. Smoke can worsen dry eyes symptoms.
Ø Use artificial tears regularly. If you've got chronic dry eyes, use eyedrops even when your eyes feel fine to stay them well-lubricated.
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