Did you know that July is Dry Eye Awareness month? That’s right, and as one of the most common indications that we see in the industry, it is crucial that we raise awareness regarding this condition. By enhancing education and creating better communication around Dry Eye, we can even further our efforts in the treatment and prevention of it.
Through numerous studies, researchers have come to learn many of the factors that cause Dry Eye, though more and more indicators are being discovered. Environment, age, sex, ethnicity, race, medication, and other diseases can all play a role in causing Dry Eye symptoms, which are often quite painful and can lead to poor general health and depression.
While we at Trial Runners are working with a number of sponsors who are looking to treat the symptoms of this condition more effectively via pharmaceutical means, there are things that individuals can do at home to ease some of the discomfort. So, in the spirit of education and communication, here are four easy ways to ease the symptoms of Dry Eye beyond the use of medications:
- Blink: Sounds simple, but it can help. The average individual blinks 14 to 18 times a minute, which helps spread a protective oil found in tears over the surface of the eye, preventing dryness. In today’s world, we are almost always connected to screens, which actually causes us to blink less, causing dryness. Simply reminding yourself to blink more can help.
- Humidify: Indoor forced air is often very dry and can lead to dryness. Investing in an in-home or desktop humidifier can help make your environment more comfortable.
- Omega Fatty Acids: As mentioned before, tears contain a protective oil for the eye that is similar to omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. Ingesting these acids by eating foods rich in them, such as fish and walnuts can help replenish these oils. You may also prefer to take a fish oil supplement as part of your daily routine, providing the same benefit.
- Turn off the Fans: Air movement forces the moisture out of our eyes via evaporation more quickly than normal. Avoiding fans and dryers can help keep eyes moist. If there is a lot of wind outdoors, glasses can help shield your eyes from the breeze.
If you find yourself suffering from Dry Eye, talk to your ophthalmologist about treatment options and other ways you can prevent severe symptoms. He or she can recommend a variety of suggestions to keep you and your eyes comfortable.
For more information on Dry Eye or other eye conditions, a great resource to check out is the American Academy of Ophthalmology, which can be found here: https://www.aao.org/.