Are your eyes feeling itchy and uncomfortable? It’s time to show your windows to the world some love. Here are seven of the most common reasons your eyes might be bugging you, and what you can do to get relief:
Allergies. Most often, dry and itchy eyes are caused by allergies. Try over-the-counter eye drops formulated specifically for allergy sufferers, and/or allergy medication. Cold compresses may help, too.
Dry eye. This is a condition in which a person does not have enough tears to lubricate and nourish the eye. Tear production tends to diminish as you get older, and dry eyes are more common in people over 50 and those who live in high altitudes and desert environments. Using a humidifier and over-the-counter eye drops can help. Prescription drops are available if the problem persists.
Something in your eye. A piece of sand from the beach or a speck of dust can be all it takes to make your eyes itchy. Consider wearing protective eyewear, such as wraparound sunglasses, to safeguard your eyes when it’s windy. Use protective eyewear when you are participating in activities that can create airborne debris, such as mowing the lawn.
Pink eye. If eye itchiness is paired with a pink or red color and discharge coming from the eye, you’ll want to seek medical attention. In the meantime, don’t touch your eye — pink eye is contagious and you can easily spread it to your other eye or another person.
Contact lenses. If you wear contacts daily, you may experience itchy eyes from time to time, especially if you are wearing them too long. Allergies can also make your eyes even itchier while wearing contacts. The best thing to do in these situations is to avoid wearing your contacts for more than the recommended time and to take out your contacts and wear glasses instead if your eyes are too itchy. Come see us if the problem persists.
Digital eye strain. We are all spending more time in front of a screen than ever before. This constant exposure can lead to eye discomfort. Give your eyes a break by using the trusty 20-20-20 rule: Look at something about 20 feet away for 20 seconds every 20 minutes of digital device use. Making sure you’re blinking enough can also help. If you’re worried about digital eye strain, make an appointment to see us.
Irritating products. Some chemicals or ingredients in personal care products can irritate your skin and your eyes. If any of these products are causing a problem, discontinue their use.