Dry eye disease is a common condition that occurs when the eyes don't make enough tears, or the tears evaporate too quickly.
This leads to the eyes drying out and becoming red, swollen and irritated
The symptoms of dry eye disease are usually mild for most people.
Symptoms usually affect both eyes and often include:
-feelings of dryness, grittiness or soreness that get worse throughout the day
-burning and red eyes
-eyelids that may stick together when you wake up
-temporary blurring of the vision, which usually improves after blinking
Common causes of this condition include:
- being in a hot or windy climate
- wearing contact lenses
- certain underlying medical conditions, such as blepharitis(inflammation of the eyelids)
- side effects of certain medications – including antihistamines
Dry eye syndrome isn't usually a serious condition. Treatments are available to help relieve the symptoms, which include:
- eye drops to lubricate the eyes (you can usually purchase this over the counter)
- medications to reduce any inflammation
- if necessary, surgery to prevent tears from draining away easily
As well as medical treatments, there are some things you can do yourself to help prevent dry eye syndrome or reduce the symptoms.
- keeping your eyes and eyelids clean and protecting them from dusty, smoky, windy and dry environments
- using your computer or laptop correctly to avoid eye strain
-using a humidifier to moisten the air