Dry Eye FAQs

Dry Eye FAQs

What can dry eyes feel like?

  • Dry
  • Hot
  • Sandy
  • Gritty
  • Watery
  • Irritated


What can cause dry eyes?

  • Dry climate/weather
  • Allergies
  • Contact lenses
  • Smoke
  • Pollution
  • Natural aging process
  • Diseases (e.g. rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, Sjögren’s syndrome, &c.)


How can you alleviate dry eyes at home?

  • Take breaks often when reading or watching TV; close your eyes and do not rub
  • Avoid smoke and other eye irritants
  • Use wraparound sunglasses to protect your eyes from sun, wind, and grit
  • Use a humidifier or vaporizer to moisturize your bedroom; be sure to clean the machine well
  • Do not use fans while you sleep
  • If you usually wear contact lenses, use rewetting drops or wear glasses until dryness resolves
  • Take your medications exactly as prescribed; call your doctor if you think there is a problem
  • Try using artificial tears at least 4 times per day; if you need it more often, use preservative-free drops as they are less likely to irritate your eyes
  • Use a lubricating gel at bedtime as they are thicker and last longer while you sleep; be aware that they may cause blurred vision for a short time
  • Put a warm compress on your eyelids every morning for about 5 minutes, then massage your eyelids gently


How to put in drops:

  • Tilt head back and lower eyelid down with one finger
  • Place a drop of medication inside the lower lid, being careful not to touch the bottle to your eye
  • Close your eye for 30-60 seconds to let the medication spread


When should you call for help?

  • Watch closely for changes in your health, and be sure to contact a doctor if your eyes are still dry, irritated, or teary, or if the artificial tears do not help.


**For coupons for artificial tears visit:



  1. How can you tell the difference between allergies and dry eyes? I wake up every morning with my eyes watering and itching. Sometimes during the day they will burn. I never get any redness, discharge but they are very light sensitive. At the same time I get drainage down my throat and fullness in my ears. I get confused if this is allergies or dry eyes.

    1. Typically if those symptoms are caused by allergies then you will have some type of conjunctivitis accompanying the corneal dryness. The only way to tell for sure is to make an appointment for further evaluation and management. You can make an appointment request directly from our website!

  2. It’s helpful to know that if normal eye drops aren’t helping that we should have a doctor check it out. My son has been complaining lately that his eyes have been bothering him, and nothing we’ve tried has done much to improve it. Maybe we should let an eye doctor see what’s going on and figure out whether there’s a way to improve it.

    1. Absolutely! Over-the-counter tears also commonly include preservatives which can even irritate the eyes worse. Call us to make an appointment and we will be happy to discuss your many options for dry eye treatment!

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