Dry eyes and blurry vision are symptoms of dry eye disease. A person may experience these symptoms due to lifestyle or medical factors, such as excessive screen time, dietary factors, and certain conditions.
Dry eye disease describes when the eyes do not produce enough tears to stay moist or when tears do not work correctly. This can cause uncomfortable symptoms, such as dry eye, and in some cases can lead to vision problems, such as blurry vision. However, other health problems can be behind constantly dry eyes and blurred vision.
Read on to learn more about potential causes for both dry eyes and blurry vision.
Dry eye disease occurs when the tear ducts
The damage may then
If the see-through parts of the eye are no longer clear, the light passing through it can become scattered and cause the
This can make what the eye sees less clear, causing blurred vision.
As well as blurry vision, dry eye has a range of other effects on the eye, including:
- red eyes
- the feeling of stinging, burning, scratching, or grittiness
- making an individual more sensitive to light
- watering or weeping
- stringy, mucus-like discharge in the corner of the eye
Several lifestyle and medical factors can cause dry eyes and blurry vision,
- Excessive screen time: This can reduce how often a person blinks, which can mean that the eyelids do not spread tears across the eye as often as they should.
- Wearing contact lenses: A
2017 reviewsuggests that dry eye discomfort is the most common reason that people stop using contact lenses within 3 years of starting.
- Dehydration: Not having enough fluids in the body
may have linksto dry eye disease.
- Vitamin deficiency: A shortage of certain vitamins in the diet can cause dry eye, especially
vitamin A. Not getting enough vitamin A can affect how the glands in the eye function, reducing tear and mucus production.
- Medication side effects: Some medications make people produce fewer tears, including antihistamines, blood pressure medications, decongestants, and antidepressants.
- Medical conditions: Autoimmune conditions including lupus, Sjögren’s syndrome, and rheumatoid arthritis can reduce tear production. In these conditions, the immune system attacks otherwise healthy tissue, including the tear and saliva glands.
People who experience dry eyes and blurry vision have several treatment options available. These
- Artificial tears: These over-the-counter (OTC) eye drops can help to replace tears, keeping the eye moist and comfortable. They’re often the
first line of treatmentfor people with dry eye, but they’re not always effective.
- Prescription eye drops: If OTC eye drops don’t relieve symptoms, an eye doctor can prescribe stronger medications containing ingredients like cyclosporine and lifitegrast. These can trigger the production of more tears.
- Lifestyle changes: If excessive screen time or dehydration are causing dry eyes and blurry vision, decreasing screen time and increasing water intake may help.
- Home remedies: Warm compresses, eye masks, or goggles that warm the eyelids, and eyelid massages may all help to
soothe dry eye symptoms.
Taking steps to adjust the daily environment can help to keep dry eyes and blurry vision at bay. These may include:
Using a humidifier at home and at work, blinking more during screen work, and taking nutritional supplements to correct nutritional imbalances may help to reduce dry eye symptoms.
Wear wraparound sunglasses while outdoors to protect against winds, sun rays, and pollutants that may all irritate or dry out the eyes. Try to avoid excessively hot, dry, or windy environments where possible.
Managing chronic conditions
If an underlying chronic condition like lupus or Sjögren’s syndrome is behind dry eye symptoms, work with a doctor to manage the symptoms and prevent flare-ups.
Specialist contact lenses
Some types of contact lenses
Dry eye disease can cause dry, scratchy eyes and blurry vision. However, many treatments are available, and changes to daily life can help to reduce discomfort and make vision clearer.
People who have concerns about these symptoms or whose symptoms get worse might benefit from consulting an eye doctor.