Are you ignoring dry eyes? Have you noticed that your eyes feel dry, itchy, or even sometimes watery but never took it seriously and went on with life? If yes, then you are ignoring dry eyes. In fact, most of the people who experience these symptoms don’t take them seriously until the symptoms become unbearable. You shouldn’t ignore dry eye symptoms because they don’t go away on their own.
What is Dry Eye and What causes Dry Eye?
Tears keep your eyes moist enough and are very essential for optimal eye health. Dry Eye Syndrome is the reduction in the amount or quality of tears that are produced in your eyes.
Ideally, tear film covers the eyes always to prevent the eyes from drying out and thus ensure clear vision. If for some reason the glands that produce tears start to produce fewer tears or tears that are not of good quality and don’t have the proper balance of water, oils, proteins, and electrolytes, the tear film can become unstable, allowing dry spots to form on the surface of the eye. This causes disruptions in an outer barrier of the eye’s epithelial surface and the disruptions allow microbes to invade the eye, leading to irritation and infection. Many factors can cause this condition including tear gland dysfunction, eyelid problems, medications, and environmental factors.
Symptoms of Dry Eye
As mentioned above, many of the symptoms of dry eye include burning, stinging, itching, grittiness, soreness, or a feeling of a foreign object in the eye. Additionally, you may also experience redness in the eye and light sensitivity. Vision may also be blurred or doubled at times and the eyes may fatigue easily. Another common symptom is that blurry vision clears when you blink. This happens because the tear film doesn’t form a smooth coat over the eye surface or it evaporates too quickly causing blurry vision.
Sometimes, you may also notice pain, some discharge from the eye especially when you wake up in the morning. If you are a contact lens wearer, you may experience discomfort when wearing contact lenses. Excessive tearing is another sign of dry eye which can be confusing but the truth is excessive tears are the result of your eye trying to compensate for the lack of moisture. However, these excessive tears are of very low quality and are not good enough to keep your eyes moist.