Your eyes are one of the most delicate and sensitive organs in your body, so even when something very small is wrong, you can experience a great deal of pain or irritation. A common problem that some people experience is dry eyes. Normally, your eyes stay moist with a combination of fluids and tears that make blinking easy and the surface of your eye more flexible. The moist coating on your eyes also protects the eye from irritants that are present in the air around you.
Learn the symptoms and causes of dry eyes so you can find relief if this is a problem you have.
If your eyes don't produce enough tears or if the tears are not produced properly, you will have dry eyes. Simple signs of dry eyes include a stinging or burning feeling as you go throughout your day, especially when you are in a dry or irritating environment, such as a hot day in a city with higher pollution levels. You can produce mucus in strings around your eyes. Your eyes might look red. You also might feel like you have a harder time seeing in the dark, especially when driving, and you might not have any tolerance for contact lenses.
Your eyes will also dry out faster when you do certain activities. For example, your eyes might feel tired or start to hurt when you're watching TV or when you're running outside. These activities normally dry the eye out a bit for anybody, but when your eyes are already dry, these experiences become even more uncomfortable.
There are a number of reasons why you can have dry eyes. Some of the causes are temporary and some are chronic. For example, you might have drier eyes during pregnancy or when you're taking a certain medication. These are temporary and you can remedy the lack of tears with eye drops to help keep your eyes moist.
Sometimes dry eyes are the indication of another underlying problem. If you have diabetes, for example, dry eyes are common. Your eye doctor can help you find the cause for your dry eyes. Allergies, poor nutrition, and thyroid problems can also affect tear quality and production.
There are a number of treatments available, including medications to reduce inflammation in your eye and eyelid. You can also have a surgical treatment to help direct more fluid to your eyes with tears derived artificially or even from your own blood fluid.
For more information, talk to your eye doctor.