Between the cold and arid air, cold and flu season, and the biting winter winds, our collective suffering from dry eyes skyrockets during the winter season.
Unfortunately, the problem won’t simply solve itself If dry eyes aren’t treated properly. Neglecting dry eyes can lead to further problems, like scratchiness, blurred vision, and light sensitivity.
Luckily, dry eye symptoms are relatively easy to treat. In fact, most symptom management can be tackled at home without the need for medications.
Here are seven dry eye remedies to soothe those dry eyes from the comfort of your home.
Studies have shown that omega 3 fatty acids help increase the production of oils that coat the eye from the glands on the edges of your eyelids, called meibomian glands. For many people suffering from dry eyes, this can even replace the need for artificial tears.
You can easily add omega 3s to your diet with supplements, or simply by eating more fish.
Just like a back and body massage, and eye massage relaxes your muscles and improves blood flow. Massaging around your eyes can even stimulate tear production and help naturally take some of a sting out of dry eye symptoms.
Just remember—if it hurts, you’re applying too much pressure! Eye massages should be soothing, not painful.
Drink Extra Water
This dry remedy is more than meets the eye—no pun intended. Did you know that human beings have a natural tendency to drink less water in colder temperatures? That’s why we tend to be less hydrated in the winter, which can lead to dry eyes.
If you have a habit of neglecting drinking water, focus on drinking at least 64 ounces (a half gallon) of water each day, especially in the winter.
Warm Eye Compress
Just like a massage, a warm compress relaxes the area around your eyes and actually rehydrates them. It also helps soothe the gritty feeling that dry eye causes. In some cases, it can even help loosen oil that’s clogging eyelid glands, leading to healthier and more soothing tear production.
Simply soak a clean hand towel in medium-warm water, ring it out well, fold it up, and rest it over your eyes for 3-4 minutes or until it cools. Re-warm and reapply the towel as needed for relief.
For some people, environmental and biological factors prevent natural healthy tear production, and artificial tears are the only feasible solution. Luckily, eye drops tend to be minimally invasive and typically don’t have a laundry list of scary side effects.
Keep in mind that different eye drop brands are formulated differently, and most use preservatives to prevent bacteria from forming after you open the bottle. In some cases, certain preservatives can cause mild irritation, so don’t be afraid to try a few different brands to find the one that best suits your eyes.
Limit Screen Time
Reducing your time spent staring at a screen is always good for your eyes. It’s especially true for dry eyes any time of year.
Did you know that humans tend to blink almost 60% less frequently when looking at a computer? As you can imagine, this leads to irritation including dry eyes, eye fatigue, and more.
If you’re a heavy computer user, try the 20-20-20 rule: Every 20 minutes, focus on an object 20 feet away for at least 20 seconds.
Focus on Sleep
Like the rest of your body, your eyes get much-needed rest and rejuvenation while you sleep. If your dry eyes are a result of inflammation or an autoimmune disorder, sleep is crucial. Well-regulated sleep is shown to be one of the best remedies for inflammation, and this includes inflammation that leads to dry eyes.
Home remedies not helping?
Unfortunately, home remedies can’t cure every instance of dry eyes, especially for chronic dry eye sufferers.
If you suffer from dry eyes and you haven’t found a helpful solution, schedule an appointment with ilumin to get relief today.