Most people experience dry eye symptoms at some point in their lives. If you’re now at that point, you want to know how to prevent dry eyes, so you don’t suffer from symptoms such as stinging, scratching, and burning. Fortunately, there are some things you can do to prevent dry eyes from becoming a long-term problem.
You likely expose your eyes to dry air without realizing it. For instance, when you’re in your car, you might point the air conditioner or heater toward your face, which can dry out your eyes. At home, it’s normal to point a fan toward you to maximize your comfort. Fans, air conditioners, and heaters can dry out your eyes, so never point them at your face. Also, your home’s furnace can dry out your eyes, so use a humidifier during the winter months to maintain moisture in the air.
Tired eyes can dry out, leading to the symptoms associated with dry eye. Rest your eyes every 10 minutes when watching TV, reading, or using the computer. When you rest your eyes, increase your blinking. Blinking stimulates tear production and moistens your eyes.
If taking computer breaks every 10 minutes isn’t possible, adjust your monitor so that you look downward. You won’t open your eyes as wide when looking down, which decreases the chance of developing dry eye symptoms.
When it’s windy outside, wear wraparound sunglasses to keep the dry wind from your eyes. If you aren’t sure which sunglasses to purchase, your optometrist can help.
Sleeping in your contacts or failing to clean them properly can cause dry eye symptoms. Also, wearing your contacts for too long can make your eyes dry out. Follow your eye doctor’s instructions when wearing and caring for your contacts to prevent dry eye.
Cigarette smoke can cause your eyes to dry out. If you’re a smoker, now is a great time to quit. If you are friends with smokers, limit your exposure to secondhand smoke. When your friends step out for a cigarette, stay inside and enjoy the fresh, clean air. Your eyes will thank you.
Smoke from fires can also dry out your eyes. As much as you enjoy a fire during the winter, remember that the fire can cause your symptoms to flare. If you decide to attend a bonfire, wear sunglasses to limit the exposure to smoke.
You can also use artificial tears to prevent your eyes from drying out. The tears will add lubrication to your eyes, so they aren’t red, itchy, or painful. If your dry eyes aren’t due to an underlying cause, this should prevent the symptoms.
If you still have dry eyes, it’s time to get professional help. Houston Dry Eye Clinic provides different treatments for people who suffer from dry eyes. Call our Houston, Texas, clinic at (713) 664-4760 to schedule a consultation.