Do your eyes feel dry, itchy and burn at the end of every day? If you answered yes, then you may have dry eye. Dry eye occurs when the eyes do not produce tears properly or when the tears are not the right consistency. Symptoms of dry eye can be aggravating and can completely ruin your day! Here’s a list of ways you can improve these irritating symptoms:
Give Your Eyes a Break
If you feel like symptoms are most prominent while reading or watching TV, then your eyes need a break. It is recommended that we look away for at least 20 seconds every 20 minutes from reading or staring at a screen. It’s also important to remember to blink often, especially when staring at a screen or reading. This may seem very obvious, but many of us don’t blink as often as we should! To support your eyes, softly blink every 2-4 seconds, adding up to fifteen to thirty blinks per minute; this will keep your eyes well lubricated.
Analyze Your Work Place
If there are any drafts moving in your direction for a long period of time this can cause dry eye or make symptoms even worse. Moving in a different angle away from drafts can protect your eyes from the dry air and dry eye altogether.
Keep the Air Moist
Dry air can irritate your eyes, nose throat and lips! The most effective way to add moisture to the air is using a humidifier. This will keep your eyes comfortable especially during times when the air conditioner or the central heating is on, which causes dry air. A humidifier can be kept in your home, workplace, and even your car. It is crucial that the humidifier is kept clean to prevent mold or mildew build up, which is not good for you or your eyes.
Eye drops will offer you immediate relief from dry eye and will promote healing. Preservative-free eye drops are recommended as they contain fewer additives and can be applied more than four times a day. In addition to eye drops, gel inserts and ointments are also effective and may offer even longer lasting relief.
Change Your Diet
Eating healthier and changing your diet can improve symptoms of dry eye and promote healthy eyes. Adding omega-3 fatty acids to your diet can stimulate healthy tears and help with those who have dry eye. This can be done by eating more foods like fish, nuts, leafy green vegetables, or taking supplements.
If these tips do not relieve the symptoms of dry eye, make an appointment with an ophthalmologist here at Associates in Ophthalmology. There are many successful and non-invasive treatments that treat dry eye so make the steps to eliminating these pesky symptoms today!