What to Do for Dry Eyes

Dry Eyes Hendersonville

When tear ducts do not provide enough moisture, dry eyes can result. Dry eyes can cause discomfort, including a stinging or burning sensation, and decreased vision. You may experience dry eyes temporarily in highly air-conditioned rooms or in the cabin of an airplane, where the air is recycled. There are a number of other causes of dry eyes, but there are also many appropriate treatments to consider.


Treating Dry Eyes

There are steps you can take on your own to treat dry eyes, which are simple to implement and could quickly give relief. For example, if you run air conditioning often during the hot summer months or use a furnace in the winter, use a humidifier to reintroduce moisture to the air. Moving air can also cause dryness, so try lowering fan speeds. Replace disposable air filters or clean reusable ones at least once every three months, and clean your home often to reduce dust.

Other treatment options may include over-the-counter artificial tears, gels, and eye drops used to increase eye moisture. Lubricating eye ointments are even stronger and preserve moisture for a longer period of time, but you should only use these overnight as they can cause blurry vision.


Do I Need to See an Optometrist? 

Sometimes, dry eye symptoms may become more severe than simple stinging or burning. Dry eyes may also produce stringy, sticky mucus around the eyes, as well as light sensitivity, eye fatigue, and eye redness. You may feel like there is a foreign object in your eye or have blurred vision.

If you have discomfort or severe symptoms from dry eyes for a prolonged period, it may be time to see a doctor. This is especially the case if your eyes are irritated or painful. Dry eyes can result in complications if not treated, such as frequent eye infections, tears on the surface of the eyes, and scarring from untreated inflammation. If you’re concerned, contact an eye care specialist to discuss treatment options.


Prescription Treatments 

Your doctor will determine the source of your dry eyes by conducting an eye exam, taking your health history, and measuring the volume and quality of your tears. If you have an eye infection or inflammation, the doctor will prescribe antibiotics. Additionally, your doctor may recommend prescription strength eye drops to keep inflammation at bay. In some circumstances you may also need an insert that will release artificial tears to lubricate your eyes.