Is your dry eyes symptom causing you to reach for the eye drop on the table again? Dry eye disease is a common condition that occurs when your tears aren’t able to provide adequate lubrication for your eyes. This can be distracting, especially if you are trying to concentrate on your screen work or even take a break to play mobile games! Some common dry eyes symptoms include:
- Stinging, scratching or burning sensations
- Temporary blurred or double vision
- Light sensitivity
- Pain or eye redness
- Watery eyes or excessive tearing which may be due to reflex tearing
- Sensation of having something in your eyes
- Difficulty wearing contact lenses
Here are some reasons why our eyes may feel dry and let us learn how we can better lookafter our dry eyes!
Why Do We Get Dry Eyes?
1. Blink Less while Focusing on Screens
Blinking helps to produce tears to moisturize our eyes. However, when we are too focused staring at the screens, we unknowingly slow down our blinking rate, which results in the dryness of our eyes. Studies have shown that computer users blink less while using the computer. The average person blinks 7 times a minute, as compared to the normal rate of 20 times per minute.
2. Use Contacts Lenses
According to a study in Optometry & Vision Science Trusted Source, about half of contact lens wearers develop contact lens-related dry eye. Contact lens wearers are at greater risk for dry eyes because the contact lens on the cornea partially blocks oxygen from entering the eye. It is common for wearers of contact lenses to experience dry, gritty eyes, especially at the end of the day, despite the lenses allowing a larger amount of oxygen to permeate the eye.
Sometimes the problem is not with your contact lenses, but with the solution you’re using to clean them. Preservatives in some solutions can irritate your eyes and leave them dry. It is also possible that some of these may contain materials that are incompatible with certain types of soft contact lenses and can cause a reaction.
3. Lack of Sleep
Sleep is fundamental to good health and well-being. Lack of sleep may also affect the health of your eyes as our eyes do not get enough time to rejuvenate. Much like the brain and the body, your eyes heal by themselves as you sleep. As a result of insufficient sleep, the eyes may produce lesser tears, leading to dry, itchy, or bloodshot eyes. Recurrent episodes of sleep deprivation increase pressure on your eyes, causing eye strain and dry eye symptoms. It is possible for eye infections to develop as a result of this!
Dry Eyes Remedies
1. Blink More Consciously
Reducing screen time is almost inevitable, especially in this digital age. Remember to consciously blink more to help moisture dry eyes and clean the surface of your eyes from any debris.
Try sticking a sticker or post-its reminder to blink your eyes and place it near your workstations. This little effort will assist you to create new mindful blinking habits to keep your eyes healthy and happy.
We’ve created a “Blink Blink Blink” reminder and printed it on a bumper sticker from SingaPrinting. The bumper sticker is waterproof and suitable to stick it on your water bottles! Great way to remind yourself to blink~
Bumper Stickers Credit: SingaPrinting
2. Practice Proper Contact Lens Care
Let your eyes breathe by going contacts-free for a few hours a day. Although it’s convenient to just wear your contacts all day till you sleep at night, it’s really not a good idea when you have dry eyes. It is recommended that you take out your contacts two hours before bedtime. Taking off your lens will allow you to get good exposure to oxygen for your eyes and nourish them from your natural tear film.
Don’t forget to moisturise your eyes with eye drops before putting on your contact lens too! You can use eye drops throughout the day so your eyes stay moist and happy. *Remember to check the label of your eye drops to ensure that it’s contact lenses friendly.
3. Maintain Healthy Diet
It is also important to maintain a healthy diet that contains plenty of Lutein, Vitamin A, and fatty acids to help prevent the symptoms of dry eyes. There are plenty of foods that contain Lutein, Vitamin A and Omega-3 and can improve the eye’s oil film, including cod liver oil, butter, egg yolks, chia seeds, oily fish and leafy greens. If you don’t get enough from your daily diet, consider taking supplements or vitamins to fill the nutritional gap. This may help to improve dry eye symptoms and reduce the need for eye drops!
In some cases, persistent dry eye symptoms may mask a more serious condition. It’s important to seek a professional and get an eye check if the symptoms persist or get worse.
Image: Eye Care Tips Postcards
PS: Don’t let dry eyes becomes part of your daily life. Lets us look after our dry eyes in this digital age by giving them a little more attention they deserves!