Prevent Dry Eyes from Occurring
Edited by Christine dela Cruz, Lynn
Have you ever experienced a feeling like there a small bit of dirt in your eyes, and it seems like it's scratching on your eyeball? Have you tried looking in the mirror to see if there's actually dust, only to find out that that there is none? Still, the discomfort continues through the day and, at times, even lasts for days. Then you might be suffering from dry eyes, which is quite prevalent.
The frequent use of computers is one of the most common causes of dry eyes. When a person stares for a long time at a computer screen, he tends not to blink. This causes dry eyes because the eyes do not become lubricated enough. Although in itself, it is not a major problem, the fact that it's very uncomfortable and disturbing is a good reason for someone experiencing this to seek relief.
If left untreated, dry eyes can lead to more serious conditions, which may be more difficult to resolve.
This is common among people over 40 years of age, especially women, because it is said that at this age, the hormones responsible for the production of tears are getting depleted. However, dry eyes may also happen at any other age, and mainly it is caused by lifestyle.
Eye Lubrication Process
Tears cover the eyes and this makes vision more optimal. It makes you feel comfortable as well because it does not feel like your eyes are tearing off because of too much dryness. There are essentially three layers that make up the tears:
- 1Mucus. This is the innermost layer that goes immediately over the conjunctiva, which is the clear layer that serves as the eyeball's outer lining. The conjunctiva is the main part responsible for producing this. The main function of the mucus is to allow the other layers of the tear to be evenly spread all throughout the eyeball.Advertisement
- 2Saltwater solution. This is between the mucus and the outermost layer and comprises most of the tear. The lacrimal glands are responsible for the production of this watery substance. This saltwater solution acts as the eyes' defense against dirt or dust as it flushes them out of the eye the moment they get in contact. This explains the sudden tearing that happens when you get something into your eye. Dry eyes are most often caused by a problem in this layer.Advertisement
- 3Lipids. This is a layer of fats or oils which are mainly there to prevent evaporation of the second layer, which is made up mostly of water. These oils come from the oil glands located at the eyelids.
Symptoms of Dry Eyes
- 1Feeling of dust or dirt inside the eye. It is the same sensation as having a bit of dirt enter your eye. The only difference is that the discomfort does not go away, no matter how much you tear up.
Factors that Aggravate Dry Eyes
- 1Too much computer use. When you don't blink as often as normal, this easily leads to dry eyes. The watery layer evaporates more quickly.
- 2Exposure to air conditioners (or heaters). A very cold room with little moisture aggravates dry eyes.
- 3Windy areas. When wind keeps on blowing onto your face and eyes, it can cause your tear glands to try to work harder in producing tears to lubricate the eyes.
- 4Exposure to sunlight. This can quickly evaporate the watery substance in your eyes.