Healthy eyes produce enough lubricant in the form of tears to hydrate themselves and prevent external particles from causing irritation. When your eyes lack enough quality tear solution, the result is dry eye. While not necessarily damaging, dry eye is a condition that is accompanied by frustrating irritation. Sometimes, dry eye becomes a chronic condition that requires more serious intervention to correct.
For those with occasional dry eye, however, there are a handful of tips and tricks that can be used to prevent dry eyes from occurring. Simple and easy to implement into a routine, these 5 ways to prevent dry eyes can save you from the discomfort, itchiness, and sensitivity that are indicative of the condition.
How to Prevent Dry Eyes
Unless you have chronic dry eye, in which case you should visit your eye doctor for a more thorough evaluation, combatting occasionally dry eyes is relatively simple. Of course, your body and health are unique, so if you want to be cautious, talking to your eye doctor is the best route forward.
Limit Screen Time and Take Breaks
The degree to which technology is integrated into daily life for most people is astonishing. Many people work at a computer, spend extended periods on their phones, and fill their free time with video games, streaming services, and other screen-related activities. The result is a massive amount of time each day spent looking at screens.
While a certain amount of screen time is not inherently bad, prolonged periods focusing on digital displays can contribute significantly to dry eyes developing. Blinking is reduced, eyes are stressed, and irritation from eye rubbing is not uncommon. By being conscious of your screen time, including limiting it as much as possible and taking frequent breaks to give your eyes a rest, you can reduce the negative impact of our computer-dominated culture.
Protect Your Eyes
One of the most common catalysts of dry eyes is environmental factors. While airborne particulates are a concern, the wind and sun are the primary factors of which to be aware. To prevent these problem-causing considerations from becoming an issue, it is essential to use eye protection whenever possible.
Wearing protective eyewear when doing manual labor, such as yard work, is a great start. To reap the maximum benefits of eye protection, remember to put your sunglasses on any time you leave the house. By limiting the impact of the Sun’s UV rays, you can take major strides in preventing dry eyes.
Dehydration can contribute to dry eye. Water is essential to your bodily health on multiple fronts, and the well-being of your eyes is no exception. For some people, staying hydrated by drinking enough water each day is easy. Others have a more difficult time, making hydration feel like a chore. If you fall into the latter category, feel free to add flavoring to your water (preferably natural, like lemons) and embrace a hydration system that keeps you updated on your daily progress (like a water bottle with clear markings). Experiment and find what works best for you, then stick with it and enjoy the benefits!
Use a Humidifier
If you live in a dry climate, your eyes may have a more difficult time staying properly lubricated. This is especially true of dry heat (including artificial heat from a heater). To counteract the dry environment around you, consider investing in a humidifier. This device will help protect your eyes (and skin) from the dry conditions, making the prevention of dry eyes much easier.
Take Out Your Contacts
Contacts are a marvel of modern medicine, but they do have drawbacks. If you are overly reliant on contacts, you may be putting your eyes at an increased risk of dryness. Thankfully, you can simply opt for glasses instead of contacts on occasion to reduce this risk. Sometimes, all it takes is swapping to your glasses when you’re at home to give your eyes a break.
If you struggle with dry eye, try the tips above. These 5 ways to prevent dry eyes will likely help you avoid the discomfort and irritation that eye dryness is known to cause. For more information, including dry eye advice custom-tailored to you, consider speaking to your eye doctor.