Dry eyes are a common condition that arises when your eyes don’t receive adequate lubrication from tears. Several risk factors can contribute to dry eyes, including age (typically over 50), gender (hormonal changes can affect women more), a diet deficient in Vitamin A, and the use of contact lenses. Your doctor may recommend the use of eye drops, such as Cyclosporine eye drops, which have the ability to increase tear production, thus solving the issue of dry eyes. If you’re looking for some home remedies to try in addition to the eye drops, or perhaps you have a hard time administering eye drops to yourself, try these home remedies:
1. Warm compress
Applying a warm compress to your closed eyelids can help improve oil gland function and reduce eye dryness. Use a clean, lint-free cloth soaked in warm water and gently place it over your closed eyes for about 5-10 minutes. By repeating this a few times a day, not only can you have dedicated time to close and rest your eyes, but you can also improve your dry eyes.
2. Omega-3 fatty acids
If you have dry eyes, try incorporating more foods that are high in omega-3 fatty acids, such as salmon, flaxseed, walnuts, or by taking an omega-3 supplement daily. This fatty acid has anti-inflammatory properties that can improve tear quality. If you’re unsure if this is right for you, talk to your doctor about incorporating omega-3 into your diet.
3. Try the 20-20-20 rule
Excessive screen time is a huge culprit for dry eyes. Typically, the average person blinks around 12 times per minute, but when engrossed in screens, this rate drops significantly to only 5 times per minute. Consequently, this decreased blink rate can lead to heightened susceptibility to dryness, eye strain, headaches, and irritation. To mitigate these effects, it is advisable to adopt the 20-20-20 rule: for every 20 minutes spent staring at a computer or screen, take a 20-second break to shift your focus to something situated 20 feet away.
4. Use a humidifier
If you live in a dry environment or your living space always seems to feel dry, consider purchasing a humidifier to add some moisture back into the air. This is not only good for dry eyes, but it can also improve dryness of the skin, nose, throat, and lips.
5. Stay hydrated
Without water, there would be no tears, as this ingredient makes up 98% of their composition. By drinking adequate amounts of water each day, you maintain your overall body hydration which in turn improves eye moisture.