How To Fight Dry Eyes During Spring
If youve got the annoying condition of dry-eye syndrome, you might want to hold off on the air-conditioning as long as possible--even on any unusually hot days in spring.
Thats because this interim season between heaters and air conditioning can provide you with some welcome relief, especially if the humidity is high. Humid weather can give your eyes enough moisture to keep them lubricated.
The eyes rely on lubrication to clean them of dirt and minute foreign substances. If you dont have enough, youll get the classic symptoms of dry eye: light sensitivity, a sensation of grittiness (as if theres sand in your eye), redness, and even blurry vision. When people have these symptoms, they often automatically result to rubbing their eyes, and thats a bad idea. Rubbing wont solve the problem, and in extreme cases, it can ultimately damage your cornea.
But dont confuse dry-eye syndrome with allergies. The symptoms are often virtually the same, but experts say that the key difference is itching: if your eyes itch, youve got allergies. Dry-eye syndrome sufferers might think theyre rubbing their eyes because theyre itching, but basically youre doing it to clear your vision or to try to get rid of that gritty feeling. If you have any doubt about what youve got, see your ophthalmologist.
Remedies for dry-eye syndrome include over-the-counter tears and ointments If youve got a really severe case, your opthamologist may suggest a surgical procedure, punctal occlusion, that will help moisturize your eyes. Talk with your ophthalmologist about the most effective treatment for you.
Robin Westen is ThirdAges medical reporter. Check for her daily updates.
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