Tips to Tackle Dry Eyes and Eye Irritation

Allergies, microbes, and air conditioning are the main factors to contribute eye dryness and irritation, can be cured by applying a medical expert’s advice

Aug 23, 2022 - 12:07
Feb 1, 2023 - 04:17
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Tips to Tackle Dry Eyes and Eye Irritation
JLR Eye Hospital

Air conditioning, allergies, small bacteria etc… The causes of eye irritation are not lacking! And when the eyes are irritated, they scratch and burn. How to soothe this itching?

The term eye irritation refers to itchiness, pain, feelings of dryness, or grittiness in the eye. Irritation in the eyes can have many explanations. Itchy eyes can sometimes be indicative of an allergy, infection, or inflammation. Why are my eyes itchy? How do I relieve itchy eyes? How to cure itchy eyes naturally? In this article JLR Eye Hospital tells you more about the origins of eye irritation and how to soothe them. 

Itchy eyes: What are the causes?

Most of the time, when your eyes are itchy, it is dry eye syndrome, which is a phenomenon that can be greatly amplified by environmental factors. It is also common for an itchy eye to be the result of conjunctivitis, blepharitis, or even hay fever (also called allergic rhinitis).

Note:- Inflammation of the eyelids is known as Blepharitis and usually affects eyes as well as edges of the eyelids.

Irritated eyes due to inflammation

Different parts of the eye can be affected by inflammation. When the eye is directly affected, it is conjunctivitis. Very common, it is generally caused by a virus or bacteria and more rarely by an allergy.

When it's the edge of your eyelid that burns or itches, there's a good chance it's blepharitis. Again, the source of the condition can be an allergy or a virus, but most cases of blepharitis stem from a bacterial infection.

Itchy eyes, symptoms of hay fever

Seasonal rhinitis, more commonly known as hay fever, is an allergic reaction caused by inhaling certain pollen. Among the symptoms of hay fever, there are sneezing, headaches, nasal congestion, but also possible itchy eyes.

When spring arrives your eyes tend to get irritated and scratch easily, and you may be sensitive to pollen allergens.

Itchy eyes: what to do?

From grandma's tip to the use of medication, including homeopathy, there are many ways to relieve itchy eyes. Antihistamine ointment can be applied only in case of an allergic reaction or an antibiotic cream, only in case of bacterial infection.

Pharmacists are able to recommend these over-the-counter medications, depending on the symptoms experienced. Nevertheless, if necessary, some grandmother's recipes or alternative medicine treatments can relieve eyes with conjunctivitis, in addition to an allopathic treatment (relating to conventional medicine).

Tingling: is it a dry eye?

We speak of dry eye syndrome to designate the consequences of insufficient tear production to properly hydrate our eyeballs. A tear shortage can cause tingling and itching.

If with age the production of tears decreases naturally, dry eye is often favored by external factors. Polluted or particularly dry air is particularly conducive to the occurrence of this disorder. Wearing contact lenses can also cause itching.

Finally, eyes that are tired and overworked by a long period of work, driving, or excessive use of screens, for example, are more easily prone to dry eyes.

Risk factors

Dry eye can affect anyone, although it is more common among women, especially after menopause, or among people who live in metropolitan areas with higher levels of air pollution. Some studies also show that in regions at higher altitudes, this condition is more common.

Advice against dry eye

Living daily with dry eye can become uncomfortable, but there are a series of measures that can relieve some symptoms of dry eye syndrome which are: 

  • The use of artificial tears, which can be purchased without a doctor's prescription. Usually, they can be administered as often as needed (although always check the administration guidelines for each type of drop before applying them). However, when a more frequent use of once every two hours is expected, it is more advisable to use artificial tears without preservatives.
  • The application of lubricating gels is a little thicker than artificial tears. This product being thicker, may cause blurred vision. That is why it is advisable to use it before going to bed.
  • Avoid drafts, either natural, as is the case with the wind, or caused by appliances such as fans or hair dryers, as they can cause more dryness. In case the external element that caused it is external and it cannot be avoided (wind), it is advisable to wear wrap-around sunglasses that protect the eyes.
  • Use of humidifiers. Air conditioning and heating can cause more dryness. Therefore, the use of humidifiers can reduce the dryness of the atmosphere and slightly relieve symptoms.
  • Let your eyes rest. When you watch TV or read, dryness symptoms can get worse. It is, therefore, necessary to take breaks in order to rest your eyes and blink frequently in order to recover the lost moisture.
  • Avoid tobacco smoke. There are countless reasons why you should stay away from tobacco, including the fact that tobacco can irritate dry eyes and this is, in fact, one of the factors increasing the risk of experiencing this affection.
  • Applying warm compresses to the eyes and gently cleansing the eyelids with specific soaps can help release oil that collects in the eyelid glands, which can improve the quality of tears. Once the cleaning is complete, rinse the face.
  • Adding omega-3 fatty acid supplements to the diet can, in some cases, relieve dry eye symptoms. This element is found naturally in oily fish (salmon, sardines, anchovies) and in flax seeds. Consult your ophthalmologist to check if it is advisable, for your case, to take supplements containing omega-3 fatty acids and in what form and dose.

Conclusion

Dry eye is a chronic condition. Therefore, it is necessary to know how to control it and relieve the symptoms. In case you experience considerable discomfort, we advise you to make an appointment with the ophthalmologist to determine the most appropriate treatment for your case.