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June 14, 2018
Sometimes your eyes can feel dry and scratchy simply because of the environment, such as when allergy season hits or you’ve been swimming for a few hours. But if your eyes are consistently experiencing dry, burning sensations, you may have a condition called dry eye. This condition is generally minor, and can be caused by medications, aging, hormonal changes, and other environmental factors. Here are some easy ways to relieve your dry eyes:
If you spend hours on end staring at one spot, such as your computer screen or smartphone, your eyes may be experiencing eye strain. A common symptom of eye strain is dryness of your eyes because your eyes aren’t blinking and closing enough to spread basal tears over the surface of your eyes. Try taking regular breaks and closing your eyes for 15-30 seconds when using digital screens.
Smoke is a known eye irritant, whether it’s coming from a bonfire party, cigarette smoke, or your recent grill out. Try avoiding areas with lots of smoke, including locations where you will experience second hand smoke. If you are a regular smoker, here are some tips for quitting!
This tip is especially important during the summer, when people tend to spend more time outside in the sun! Exposure to direct sunlight, wind, and air pollutants can contribute to dry eyes. Sunglasses, especially those with wrap-around lenses, can help block many of these irritants from entering your eyes.
Artificial tears, such as saline solution, can be very helpful for people experiencing dry eyes on a seasonal basis. You can also find eyelid cleaners which calm inflammation around your eyes. However, if you are experiencing dry eyes for extended periods of a month or more, we recommend you consult an optometrist for a more permanent solution.