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Dry eyes

Understanding Dry Eyes: Causes and Treatments

What are Dry Eyes?

Dry eyes occur when your eyes do not produce enough tears or the tears are of poor quality. This condition leads to discomfort and, in some cases, blurred vision. It’s a common issue that can be influenced by various factors.

Common Causes of Dry Eyes
  1. Aging: As we get older, tear production often decreases.
  2. Environmental Factors: Wind, dry air, and screen time can exacerbate dry eyes.
  3. Medications: Certain medications, including antihistamines and blood pressure drugs, can contribute to dry eyes.
  4. Health Conditions: Diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, and thyroid problems can affect tear production.
  5. Eyelid Problems: Issues with eyelid function can lead to inadequate tear spreading.
  6. Contact Lens Use: Long-term use of contact lenses can increase the risk of dry eyes.
Symptoms of Dry Eyes
  • Irritation or Grittiness
  • Redness
  • Fatigue
  • Blurred Vision
  • Sensitivity to Light

Treatments for Dry Eyes

Lifestyle Changes
  • Environmental Adjustments: Use a humidifier, wear sunglasses outdoors, and take regular breaks during screen time.
  • Dietary Modifications: Increase intake of Omega-3 fatty acids found in fish, flaxseed, and walnuts.
Over-the-Counter Solutions
  • Artificial Tears: For mild cases, over-the-counter lubricating eye drops can be effective.
  • Eyelid Wipes: Helps to keep the eyelids clean and reduce irritation.
Medical Treatments
  • Prescription Eye Drops: Increase tear production or reduce inflammation.
  • Punctal Plugs: Tiny devices inserted into tear ducts to block tear drainage, increasing eye moisture.
  • Specialty Contact Lenses: Designed specifically for people with dry eyes.
Advanced Therapies
  • Lipiflow Treatment: Uses heat and pressure to unclog eyelid glands, improving oil secretion in tears.
  • Intense Pulsed Light Therapy (IPL): Targets inflammation and improves gland function.
Surgical Options

In rare cases, surgical procedures may be considered to permanently close tear ducts and preserve tear moisture.


Dry eyes, while uncomfortable, are generally manageable with a range of treatments from simple lifestyle changes to more advanced medical interventions. It’s essential to consult with an eye care specialist to determine the most effective treatment plan based on the severity and underlying cause of your dry eye condition. Regular eye examinations are crucial for maintaining eye health and addressing issues like dry eyes effectively.

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