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Tired, aching, heavy-feeling eyes?

Woman with tired, aching, heavy feeling eyes suffering from dry eye

You do not have to accept tired, heavy feeling eyes as just one of those things’ life throws at you, an inevitable part of working at a computer all day or just the result of getting older. Those feelings could be an indication that you are suffering from dry eye disease – something that affects an estimated 1 in 3 of the UK population. Symptom relief can be quick and easy – giving you back your sparkle!

This week Dry Eye Zone wants to go back to basics as getting even mild dry eye symptoms under control can give sufferers a life enhancing boost – and you will also be helping stop the progression of this chronic condition.


What is dry eye?

Dry eye is an inflammatory disease which is caused by a loss in the quantity and/or quality of your tears. It results in your tear composition becoming more concentrated or saltier, this triggers an inflammatory response which then leads to those annoying dry eye symptoms.


What do your tears do?

Your tears are a complex layered structure which covers the surface of the eye providing protection, moisture, nutrients and a smooth optical surface for clear vision. You can find out more about the power of your tears at Dry Eye Zone.


Other than tired eyes what other symptoms are there?

How people describe and experience the effects of dry eye varies considerably from one person to the next, that is why diagnosis is not always straight forward. The range of symptoms include: dry, gritty, sore, aching, itchy, burning, stinging, blurry vision – and sometimes even watery eyes!

Dry eye, especially when severe, can also have a significant emotional impact on a person's quality of life, affecting their productivity at work, ability to drive, self-esteem, and sleep quality.


Who gets dry eye?

It is a misconception that only older women are affected by dry eye. In fact, there is evidence to suggest the increase in computer and smart phone use could be linked to dry eye increasing in younger people – even children. Men are not exempt either, with aging, outdoor work and sports being potential triggers.


Is there more than one type of dry eye?

Dry eye could be caused by not making new tears fast enough or by your tears evaporating at a rate that is faster than ideal – or a combination of both. The exact nature of ‘your’ dry eye will direct your eye care professional’s recommendations for the most effective way to restabilise your ocular environment. You can learn more about the different types of dry eye here.


Will dry eye just go away?

The simple answer is no – dry eye is a chronic progressive condition and will not go away. Dry Eye Zone is still surprised at the number of people that are not aware of this concerning fact. However, you can slow the advance of symptoms by putting in place a preventative care routine.

If you do not actively manage your symptoms they will become progressively more serious, over time dry eye can result in permanent damage to the delicate ocular surface.


Why do people get dry eye?

The underlying causes can be broadly divided into two main areas -

physiological factors which include tear production, eyelid closure, blink rates, meibomian gland function, hormonal changes and certain medical conditions, and their related medication. Environmental factors also play an important role in maintaining your tear film, this includes factors such as the amount of time spent at a computer screen, air humidity, temperature, pollen levels and windy weather.

For many dry eye will be triggered by a combination of several factors working together. You can find out more here


What treatments are there for dry eye?

As there is more than one type of dry eye the most appropriate care routine will vary from one person to the next. Dry Eye Zone strongly recommends that you get the advice of an eye care professional to make sure you are taking the most effective course of action. Depending on the severity of your symptoms an eye care professional may also offer you specialist in-practice treatments such as deep-cleansing of the eyelids or tear-duct plugging.


The Circle-of-Care® highlights the essential care steps needed to take control of dry eye and help holt it’s progression. Not every step is needed for everyone, however, the cyclical approach helps to reinforce the need for on-going review in order to get the best results. You can learn more at Dry Eye Zone.


What next?

Make an appointment with an independent dry eye specialist and start taking control of your dry eye symptoms today. Researchers who with a sample of over 70,000 people have indicated that those with the greatest lost in quality of life due to dry are those without a diagnosis.  


And don’t forget to visit Dry Eye Zone and subscribe to the regular free information updates.



If you are experiencing dry eye symptoms then you should ask the advice of your eye care professional. Do not leave things untreated as symptoms may progress. Why not book your next eye examination with an independent optician today.




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