Nearly everyone will experience dry, irritated eyes at some point in their lives. But if your symptoms tend to occur frequently, there may be environmental or health factors to blame.
Read on as the team at Aucello EyeCare Center shares some simple lifestyle tweaks you can make to soothe chronic dry eye symptoms.
Blinking helps keep your eyes sufficiently lubricated, but visually intensive tasks like reading a book, working on a computer or using a smartphone for prolonged periods of time can slow down your blink rate. When performing these tasks, focus on blinking more; and, if possible, try to limit the time you spend looking at computers and other digital devices (e.g., smartphones, tablets, e-readers) to give your eyes a break.
Counteract Hot, Dry Air
Hot, dry air from a hairdryer, fan, car heater or home HVAC system can cause uncomfortable dry eye symptoms. Try to avoid using hairdryers and desk fans, and point car heating vents away from your face. At home, use a humidifier to counteract the dry air and restore moisture to the air.
Wear Wraparound Sunglasses Outside
Another tactic to avoid dry air outdoors is to wear wraparound sunglasses. The sides of the glasses can help block wind from blowing into your eyes and drying them out.
Use a Warm Compress
If you experience dry eyes regularly, your tear film may lack the oily layer it needs to avoid prematurely evaporating off the eye’s surface. Applying a warm compress over the eyes once or twice a day can help keep these oils flowing so the tears do not evaporate prematurely.
Take Omega-3 Supplements
Another way to promote a healthy layer of oil in the tear film is to eat foods containing omega-3 fatty acids, such as salmon and walnuts. If you do not have a taste for fish, or you are allergic to nuts, you can try taking a fish oil supplement.
What to Do If You Still Experience Symptoms
If you have tried the suggestions in this post but still regularly experience the uncomfortable symptoms of dry eye, you should seek the expertise of our doctors. We can determine whether the problem is the underproduction of tears, over-evaporation of tears or something else.
Once we determine the cause of your symptoms, we can determine the best method for dry eye treatment. We offer a variety of solutions, including antibiotic or steroid eyedrops and artificial tears. If the tears are evaporating too quickly off the surface of your eyes, we may decide to place tiny plugs in your tear ducts to keep the tears on the surface of your eyes longer. Or, we may recommend using Prokera amniotic membrane technology to help repair, heal and protect the surface of the eyes.
Schedule a Consultation at Aucello EyeCare Center
To schedule an appointment with our eye care specialists to discuss symptoms and solutions, please call our South Windsor office at (860) 644-4362 or our Newington office at (860) 667-2020.