What is dry eyes?
Each time the eye blinks the eyelid spreads your tears across the surface of the eye to form a film. This film acts to reduce the evaporation of moisture from the eye, helping it stay hydrated. Dry eyes can occur when either you don't produce enough tears or when a gap in the protective tear film allows moisture to be lost.
What are the main causes?
- Central heating and air conditioning - these dry out the air so reduce moisture in the eyes
- Not blinking enough - When you stare at your computer screens or TV for a long time your rate of blinking reduces by up to 60%. This reduces the spread of tears across your eye leading to damage to the protective lipid layer over the eye.
- Ageing - We tend to make fewer tears as we get older so as you age you are likely to be affected more. For women, hormonal changes during the menopause can also lead to more frequent dry eyes.
- Some medications can cause eyes to feel dry as a side effect or make existing dry eye condition worse (e.g. beta blockers, the pill and antihistamines)
What are the symptoms?
Your eyes will feel dry, irritated & uncomfortable. You may experience a gritty, burning sensation when you blink although dry eye should not cause significant pain.
This condition usually affects both eyes together but your vision should remain normal. Symptoms often worsen as the day goes on.
What can I do about it?
Optrex Double Action Monodose Dry Eyes rehydrates and refreshes eyes and provides long lasting relief.
- Drink plenty of water - this helps keep your whole body, including your eyes, hydrated.
- If you work at a computer then remember to take regular breaks and blink as often as you can.
- If possible try turning the heating or air con down a bit to avoid drying out your eyes.
- Try to keep your workplace well ventilated. If this is difficult then keep a bowl of water nearby (preferably by the heater if it's on) to increase the humidity in the room.
- If you wear contact lenses try to apply Optrex ActiMist™ Eye Spray for Dry & Irritated Eyes or Optrex Intensive Eye Drops for dry eyes regularly even before the eye feels irritated.
- Try applying a hot compress to the eyes to help stimulate the tear ducts to produce more tears.