Having dry eyes can be very uncomfortable. This generally occurs when our eyes can't produce enough tears to keep themselves lubricated and it can cause irritation and discomfort which can affect our daily life and decrease our productivity at work.
So, how can you avoid eye dryness? We give you some tips in this article.
1. Mind your environment
The dry air from air conditioners and central heating at home or at work can make your eyes dry, as it causes a faster evaporation of tears and stops your eye from lubricating properly. Try not to have them on as much if possible and, if you can't, make sure that the air is not blowing directly in your face.
A similar situation happens when its windy outdoors, and you might have noticed that your eyes start tearing up. This is the eye's way of compensating for the lack of lubrication. Wearing sunglasses, especially wrap-around models, can help you protect your eyes from dust and the wind when you're out and about.
Too much heat isn't great for your eyes, either. If you live in a dry place, and specially during the warmer seasons, it might be difficult to keep your eyes well hydrated. Using a humidifier at home can be a great solution to add moisture to the air.
2. Simple, yet very easy to forget
Keep yourself hydrated. Sounds simple, but it's easy to forget, especially when you're busy. The human body is for the most part made out of water and it also needs a constant refill in order to keep functioning properly. If you get dehydrated, you might feel fatigue and dizziness. When it comes to your eyes, they won't be able to produce enough tears to lubricate themselves effectively, causing irritation and dryness.
This is why it is important to always have a water source close by and keep yourself well hydrated. It's usually recommended to take around three litres (remember that you get hydration from food as well!), but this should be more if you're doing lots of physical exercise.
3. Avoid smoke
Smoking can increase the risk of developing dry eye syndrome, as the smoke from the cigarette can irritate and dry your eyes. If you smoke, try to do so in open spaces or have a window or door open if you are indoors. Smoke from other sources, such as bonfires, can also affect your eyes.
Quitting smoking altogether would significantly improve your health and reduce the risk of developing many conditions, but we understand it can be difficult. If you decide to quit, your doctor will be able to help you and offer advice.
4. Use eye drops
Whether your eyes regularly become dry or you just want to prevent it, using eye drops and artificial tears are one of the best ways to keep your eyes well hydrated.
They are used as a relief for many eye conditions which cause discomfort for the front part of your eyes, like conjunctivitis, and are a great choice for preventing dryness if you feel like your eye is not producing enough tears.
5. Rest your eyes and blink more often
Nowadays we spend a lot of time in front of the screen, be it for work or entertainment. As we keep our eyes focused on it, we blink less frequently and our eyes get dry. By blinking, you apply a layer of tears on the eye, keeping it well hydrated. Blinking is also a protective mechanism for the eye which helps remove foreign particles.
To keep your eyes from getting dry, force yourself to blink and take regular breaks away from the screen as much as possible. This can also be beneficial when it comes to avoiding digital eye strain.
Wearing contact lenses also makes your eyes more likely to get dry, so make sure to give your eyes a break by taking them off and wearing glasses from time to time. Also, make sure you never fall asleep with your contact lenses on!
Those are just a few things to keep in mind that will help you avoid dry eyes and make your days much more pleasant. If you fear, however, that your eyes are giving you too much trouble, even while following these recommendations, make sure to book an appointment with your eye specialist.